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Varjo Introduces Real-time Chroma Keying to MR

Enterprise XR and VR computing devices developer Varjo, is rolling out two latest features on its XR-1 Developer Edition headset. Marker tracking and real-time chroma keying are the two features enabling smooth integration of the real and virtual worlds for enterprise customers. They are also facilitating photo-realistic virtual content interactions akin to real life and generating occlusion and accuracy within mixed reality (MR).

Chroma keying commonly referred to as green screening in the film and broadcasting industries merges or integrates the physical world and virtual content. The method lets users outline reality elements, single them out using colour, and employ either scenery or models in their places. Chroma keying, which is quite inexpensive, enables the visualization of hands and real objects to facilitate instinctive interactions.

Varjo’s latest object tracking with visual markers’ functionality makes placing virtual objects in the surroundings easier. With it, even a paper featuring visual markers can be made into a visual world or a visual screen.

Both the new features work in tandem to create fresh possibilities for a vast range of applications. Imagine pilots sitting within a replica cockpit and being given some controllers for immersive and grippingly realistic training within a virtual environment. Collaborations between designers can happen within a mixed reality environment, as they interact with virtual objects, can tweak them in real-time, or put layers on three-dimensional objects to create a finished look. The development enables researchers to perform studies within mixed reality, through the incorporation of real-world and virtual components into their research spaces. Participants can handle their research instruments and virtual objects and perform a set of interactions.

Urho Konttori, Chief Product Officer, Varjo, spoke to SPAR 3D regarding the reduced developmental costs due to opting for chroma keying, saying that reductions vary based on use cases.

Varjo introduces chroma keying to mixed reality. Image source: varjo

Konttori expressed that the pixel-precision mixing of the real-world cockpit and surrounding virtual world are facilitated by the new features. He elaborated further, saying that pilots get to handle a plane just like in the real world due to their muscle memories, as the cockpit is real. Everything outside the cockpit is in virtual reality. Konttori revealed that the MR system is small and portable, and generates millions ins savings as it does not rely on a bulky and expensive laser projection dome. He also informed that multiple systems can be utilised within the very same space. According to Konttori, the new system facilitates greater training volume and quality and can produce better pilots. Training times are also reduced along with costs.

Varjo, established in 2016, is regarded as a brand that keeps pushing innovative boundaries and hiring additional talent. The company has put in efforts constantly in recent times and has obtained series B funding of $31 million. It also released the VR-1 headset featuring human-eye resolution in 2019 and released the VR-2 and VR-2 Pro headsets recently. Konttori emphasized that XR still has a long way to go, and more developments are expected in the future. The new features were worked upon following customer requests.

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