Deeper immersion possible with Snapdragon smart viewer

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A new Snapdragon smart viewer reference design from Qualcomm promises to unlock deeper levels of immersion in virtual and augmented reality (VR/AR).

Built on the Qualcomm Snapdragon XR1 platform, most recently deployed in the new Google Glass Enterprise Edition 2, the reference design will help decrease product development time in AR and VR smart viewers.

“The Snapdragon smart viewer reference design takes advantage of the XR1 processing power and allows both consumers and the enterprise to access an enhanced content offering,” explained Hugo Swart, head of extended reality (XR) at Qualcomm Technologies.

“By distributing the workload and tapping into the compute power of host devices via tethering to users’ smartphone or PC, the reference designs’ additional features like eye tracking and 6DoF controllers unlock a deeper level of XR immersion.”

The Snapdragon smart viewer reference design features six-degrees of freedom (6DoF) movement for room scale XR experiences. It does require two dedicated cameras, but enables users can walk around without the need for external motion sensors.

Full hand and eye tracking are also supported, with the involvement of Tobii in the development of Qualcomm’s Snapdragon smart viewer reference design providing superior intuitive interfaces and enabling gaze direction for fast interactions within the virtual environment.

Support is given for 6DoF controllers, a display panel with a 72Hz refresh rate and 2K resolution per eye, and a ‘standalone mode’.

On top of tethering the headset via USB-C to a host device, the Snapdragon smart viewer reference design also delivers high-quality experiences in standalone mode, where all the computing is done directly on the device.

This achieved by tapping into the XR1 heterogeneous compute architecture, which can deliver high performance VR applications such as simple games, video streaming and productivity applications all running at low power consumption.

Image credit: Qualcomm