I had a look at different technologies available that allow the user to interact within virtual environments. The reason for this is that I want to know the possibilities of making my VR experience as interactive as possible.
The touch controllers are part of the Oculus rift and allow for interaction using two analog control one on each hand. These controls become your virtual hands and allow for precision control. The Oculus can also be used with an Xbox One control but the interaction would not be as precise.
Leap Motion is an interesting way of interacting with VR environments with just hands. It’s more accurate than a mouse, as reliable as a keyboard and more sensitive than a touchscreen. You can control a computer in three dimensions with your natural hand and finger movements. Using technology similar to the Microsoft Kinect camera several infrared cameras to track the position of hands and fingers in three dimensions.
Sony’s Move control which works with the Morpheus headset in conjunction with the Playstation 4 console. These are of course another physical device that you hold with both hands and you use triggers and buttons like you would on a standard controller.
The Virtuix Omni is a very different and exiting technology for VR. It is a virtual reality motion platform where your actions in the virtual world are controlled by you entire body like walking, running, strafing, sitting and jumping in 360 degrees. This creates another level of immersion that cannot be experienced by sitting down on your couch.
The Gloveone is a very cool technology that is due for release later on this year. It involves a pair of gloves that are used to control your virtual environments. I think that it has one of the biggest potential of influencing the future VR technology and developers. What makes it different is that it allows for sensations such as the weight of virtual objects, feel and differentiate textures, feel sound waves, receive haptic warnings to even allowing to feel things like the fluttering of a butterfly or rain drop impacts and even the heat from a virtual fire. All this while of course still allowing trigger actions and interact with elements.
Daniel Starkey. (2015). The Race To Develop VR Controls. Available: http://www.polygon.com/a/the-race-for-vr/the-race-for-vr-controls. Last accessed 28th Jan 2016.