High Fidelity Launches a Mobile App for Android Devices!

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High Fidelity is really doing some innovative things with their platform! They’ve launched an Android mobile app to allow you to connect to HiFi from your Android-compatible cellphone:

We’re excited to announce that we’ve launched the alpha version of High Fidelity’s Android mobile app (called High Fidelity – Live VR Experiences 32) today! Now, you have the ability to join domains like TheSpot, Mexico, SVVR from your Daydream-ready phone to attend face-to-face events and interact with real people in the virtual world. Please note that this alpha version is not designed for Daydream View.

It’s important to us that testers are able to have an open conversation about feedback and improvements we can make so you can join real, live experiences with other people in virtual spaces right from your phone.

Are you an Android user eager to try out our new app and interested in testing it out?

If so, please fill out this form to add yourself to the list, and we will reach out to you within the next week to start gathering feedback.

Here’s a link to the app on the Google Play store. I’m an iPhone user, so I can’t test this out, but I would be very interested to hear from anyone who is using this app on their Android device. Let me know how well it works!

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Participate in High Fidelity Stress Testing and You Can Earn an Amazon Gift Card!

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High Fidelity has announced that they will be holding monthly stress tests of their platform (trying to get as many avatars into one domain as possible), and to encourage people to participate, they are giving away Amazon gift card credits:

Who? You and everyone you know.

What? Every registered attendee who shows up to the event will receive at least $10 in Amazon gift card credit.*

The more people who attend, the greater the rewards.

  • Up to 100 people // $10
  • 100+ people // $15
  • 200+ people // $20
  • 1000+ people // $25

When? Join us the first Friday of every month from 1:30pm to 2:00pm Pacfic

Where? The Spot in High Fidelity

Why? Because we believe VR can grow to Internet-scale, reach 1 billion people, and provide new opportunities for education, employment and entertainment.

How? Register, tell your friends and join us the first Friday of every month.

In order to take part, you must register using EventBrite, and show up at The Spot domain in High Fidelity at 1:45 p.m. Pacific Time.

The first stress test is today (July 6th, 2018). I did try to register, but they tell me the event is “Sold Out”, so I assume that they already have enough potential users signed up. However, you can register for future stress tests now, using the EventBrite website (just click on the Select A Date button near the top of the page). The stress tests are scheduled on the first Friday of every month.

UPDATE: Jess, High Fidelity’s Community Manager, tells me:

There are two types of tickets – one called “High Fidelity’s VR Studio Ticket,” which is to attend at our VR studio in San Francisco. That’s what you’re seeing as sold out. The other type gets you on the guest list to attend from wherever you are, and it hasn’t sold out:

Here’s a picture showing you which one you select:

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SECOND UPDATE: I was able to take a few photos of today’s stress test. Here’s one of Philip Rosedale (on stage, with his arms raised):

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And we got over 200 avatars in one place, which is apparently a new record!

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Here’s an aerial shot of the crowd:

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Metaverse Newscast Update

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Last August, I wrote:

I will be host/co-host of a news program on News One called Metaverse Newscast! This will be a regularly-scheduled 30-minute program focused on news and events in Sansar. (The Metaverse Newscast will also take a look at what’s going on in other virtual worlds such as High Fidelity and Sinespace.)

It was Tyler Scarborough (Dynamic Evolution in Sansar) who first approached me last Friday to discuss the idea of a news show. I decided to call it Metaverse Newcast. He will be building me a news studio!

Tyler did build us a lovely studio, and then the project went on hold because we were all busy doing other things. Well, I am happy to announce that I and my producer, Andrew, are moving ahead with this project after a long delay! We plan to start off slowly at first, but we are moving forward!

We will be broadening the scope of the Metaverse Newscast to cover all the newer metaverse platforms, not just Sansar, High Fidelity, and Sinespace. The pre-taped show will feature interviews with people in the virtual worlds where they are designers, creators, and entrepreneurs.

Follow the blog for more details.

Ceek: A Brief Introduction

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Ceek is yet another blockchain-based VR app that has ambitious plans to offer live concert events and other experiences:

CEEK VR simulates the communal experience of attending a live concert, being in a classroom, attending a sporting event and other “money can’t buy” exclusive experiences with friends anywhere at anytime. CEEK VR creates, curates and distributes Virtual Reality content for top-class partners using patented headsets and CEEK’s VR platform.

The website is full of references to big-name musical artists such as Katy Perry and Lady Gaga. A YouTube promotional video explains how blockchain technology is used on the Ceek platform:

Here’s a second promotional video, showing some of the VR venues within Ceek:

The Ceek token sale website has more information. Ceek alrready has a partnership with Universal Music:

CEEK VR, Inc.’s partnership agreement with Universal Music Group grants rights to live performances with top tier artists including Katy Perry, Lady Gaga, U2, Sting, Neyo and more! CEEK has upcoming releases with major studios and influential producers.

CEEK’s mobile ready, VR headset is sold at major retailers such as Amazon, Best Buy, Target and includes a $10.00 iTunes reward gift code with purchase.

CEEK VR is a distributor of cryptographically authenticated immersive content and merchandise. CEEK’s device agnostic platform is compatible with smartphones, Smart TV’s, desktop, Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality and Mixed Reality devices. CEEK’s world class partners include Universal Music, Apple and T-Mobile.

CEEK Tokens are governed by Ethereum Smart Contracts, allowing token holders ability for flexible, tokenized ‘in-world’ interactions, rewards, voting, contests, virtual goods and other transactions utilizing ERC20 compliant Tokens called CEEK.

At the moment, Ceek does not appear to support either the Oculus Rift or HTC Vive VR headsets, Windows Mixed Reality headsets, or Gear VR, although they have issued a press release that they plan to offer support sometime later this summer:

With the mission to be the first to reach one billion “CEEKERS” of content and exciting experiences, CEEK VR will be introducing new environments which will include photorealistic avatars…debuting this summer for ROBLOX in VR, GEAR VR, OCULUS VR, AND MICROSOFT mixed reality headsets.

The Ceek website currently only offers two VR viewer options: a Ceek-branded VR headset for US$99.99, which works with your existing cellphone, as well as a US$14.99 Megadeath-branded cardboard headset, which also works with your cellphone :

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Here’s an unboxing and hands-on review video of the Ceek headset:

I downloaded the Ceek app to my iPhone to test it out (it’s also available for Android devices). It offers two ways for you to view content, either a 360-degree display or the use of the Ceek VR headset:

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Since I don’t have the Ceek VR headset, I chose the first option. Bascially, you get a sort of heads-up display that looks like this:

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What I found incredibly annoying was a pop-up window that appeared over the HUD, which I could not clear:

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I eventually gave up in frustration. I have no idea how well the Ceek VR headset works, but the app seems pretty useless without it.

It would appear that Ceek still has a few bugs to iron out. I’d check back in 6 to 12 months to see what progress has been made.