UPDATED! The Lynx R-1 Kickstarter Campaign Starts Today

Not too long ago, I first wrote about Lynx, a brand new, open ecosystem, standalone mixed reality headset (i.e. both virtual reality and augmented reality), by a French startup company founded a couple of years ago by Stan Larroque.

Today, I learned that the Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign for this device is launching today, at 7:00 p.m. CEST (which works out to noon here in Winnipeg). According to the email I received:

After months and months of work on the Lynx R-1, we are so proud to tell you that our product development (both R and D) is finished.

The Lynx R-1 is the finest hardware platform for Mixed Reality. It’s a great product for playing AR and VR games and browse the Metaverse, but also for applications in education, training and simulation that will change forever the way we interact with virtuality.

Lynx is a powerful alternative to headsets on the market that are products coming from ad companies like Facebook. Our business model is just not built on your data.

Remember this video? It was in February. Imagine what the experience feels like today after our tuning iterations and optimizations. We invited some content creators to come in our office in Paris during October to test and review with the community the Lynx R-1 headset. In the mean time, Stan, our CEO, will share with you the latest about the company tomorrow right before the launch of the Kickstarter campaign.

You can view the pre-launch Kickstarter page here (there’s not much to see yet!).

There will also be a Kickstarter launch livestream on YouTube, starting at 11:00 a.m. Winnipeg time (Central Standard Time), which you can watch here:

I’m eager to see this new headset!

For further information about this potentially game-changing product, please visit their website, or follow the project and its founder, Stan Larroque, on social media: RedditTwitterLinkedIn, or YouTube.

UPDATE 11:45 a.m.: In answering questions in the second half of the livestream video above, I learned that people wearing glasses can indeed use the Lynx R-1, and in virtual reality mode, there is a detachable foam faceplate which also accommodates glasses, and blocks out the light from the sides (something that I was wondering about myself).

Also, the company announced that virtual reality vloggers Cas and Chary and Sebastian Ang of MRTC will be among the first to review the Lynx R-1 headset. This is good news, as both channels are known to offer good, in-depth, unbiased reviews of VR/AR/MR/XR hardware and software.

The livestream has now concluded, and the Kickstarter page is due to launch within the hour! I’m so excited!

UPDATE 12:00 p.m.: And the Kickstarter page is now live! Here’s the video from the Kickstarter page:

UPDATE Oct. 6th, 2021: As of this morning, the Lynx R-1 Kickstarter has exceeded its target crowdfunding goal of €300,000, with 525 backers so far, and the campaign still has 34 days left to run! I am proud to say that I put my money where my mouth is, and I am one of those initial backers:

I expect there’s going to be some twists and turns in the Lynx saga before I get my product, but I am so firmly opposed by how Facebook/Oculus is doing business that supporting this project was an easy decision for me. And it would appear that at least 524 other people agree with me! Félicitations à Stan et à son équipe!

LYNX: Announcing a New Standalone VR/AR/MR Headset with an Independent, Open Ecosystem

LYNX is an exciting new, standalone mixed reality headset, by a startup company founded a couple of years ago by Stan Larroque:

Lynx was founded 2 years ago by Stan Larroque and a dedicated team of innovators in electronics, software, optics and hardware. We believe our ecosystem deserves a versatile and open device like Lynx, for all uses from games & entertainment to professional training and education at a very affordable price point.

The LYNX R1

The LYNX headset uses the Snapdragon Qualcomm XR2 chip, and is a standalone consumer device, built for both virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and mixed reality (MR). It features hand tracking, and supports OpenXR, Unity, Unreal, Godot, SteamVR, and CloudXR. Here’s the complete technical specifications, if you’re interested.

An exploded view of the LYNX-R1 headset

But the best part of this new headset is that it will be an independent, open ecosystem which respects user privacy! That’s right, you don’t have to sign up for an account on the Facebook social network to use this device! For that reason alone, I am terribly excited about this product, and I fully expect to contribute to the Kickstarter, which will be announced sometime later this month (you can sign up to be notified by email here on the LYNC website).

Speaking of money, Mozilla Hubs’ Brian Peiris tweeted that the price of the LYNX-R1 headset will be US$499!

Here’s the one-minute Kickstarter reveal video, which dropped three days ago:

For further information about this potentially game-changing product, please visit their website, or follow the project and its founder, Stan Larroque, on social media: Reddit, Twitter, LinkedIn, or YouTube (I also note with joy that they are not on Facebook…hallelujah!).


Thank you to Rainwolf for the heads up!

South Korea Launches a Metaverse Alliance with Industry

Photo by Daniel Bernard on Unsplash

This morning I learned that the South Korean government has recently launched a metaverse alliance with over 200 businesses, including Samsung. The Korea Economic Daily reports:

Samsung Electronics Co. has onboarded South Korea’s government-led metaverse alliance in a move to strengthen partnership in virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR) and artificial intelligence (AI) sectors.  

According to the Ministry of Science and ICT (MSIT) on Aug. 3, a total of 202 firms are participating in the metaverse alliance with a number of new joiners that include Samsung. Other companies that have newly joined the alliance include Shinhan Bank, KB Kookmin Bank, SM Entertainment Co., MegaStudyEdu Co. and Cheil Worldwide.

The MSIT-led metaverse alliance kicked off on May 18 with 25 firms and institutions as participants. The initial members include the country’s three telecom giants SK Telecom Co., KT Corp. and LG Uplus, automaker Hyundai Motor Co., Naver affiliate Naver Labs Co. and Kakao affiliate Kakao Entertainment Inc. Other current members of the metaverse alliance include GIANTSTEP Inc. MAXST Co. and CJ ENM Co.

The main objective of the alliance is to establish the country’s metaverse ecosystem by growing the metaverse-related AR, VR and extended reality (XR) sectors. The alliance has also designated six key industries that will adopt more metaverse technologies moving forward: medicine, manufacturing, construction, education, retail and national defense.

It will be interesting to see what comes out of this alliance, and I wonder if other nations will follow suit (if they haven’t already).


Thank you to Vytek for the heads up!

UPDATED! The Launch of Microsoft Mesh at the Microsoft Ignite Event: Lots of Sizzle, But Little Evidence of Steak

Have you joined the RyanSchultz.com Discord yet? You’re invited to be a part of the first ever cross-worlds discussion group, with over 500 people participating from every social VR platform and virtual world! We discuss, debate and argue about the ever-evolving metaverse and the companies building it. More details here.


On Tuesday, March 2nd, 2021, I put on my shiny new Valve Index VR headset and went to the Microsoft Ignite event, which I attended in a virtual auditorium on the social VR platform AltspaceVR (which, of course, is owned by Microsoft).

There was the usual enthusiastic corporate keynote by Microsoft Satya Nadella, with special guests such as film director James Cameron. Almost everybody was sporting a Microsoft HoloLens 2 mixed reality headset.

Here are a few pictures I took at the event:

The purpose of the event was to promote something called Microsoft Mesh. What is Microsoft Mesh? Good question. Engadget writer D. Hardawar attempts a concise explanation:

…Microsoft Mesh, the company’s ambitious new attempt at unifying holographic virtual collaboration across multiple devices, be they VR headsets, AR (like HoloLens), laptops or smartphones. Powered by Microsoft’s Azure cloud, Mesh isn’t just an app, it’s a platform that other developers can use to bring remote collaboration to their own software. If remote work is here to stay — and by most accounts, it is — Microsoft wants to be the company taking us beyond Zoom video chats, and towards holographic experiences that everyone can join.

“Not only are we going to be able to share holograms, but we’ll be able to do so in a way that gives us agency and presence,” Sullivan said during our virtual meeting. “We can create these experiences, where even though we’re physically separated, it feels like we’re in the same room, sharing in an experience and collaborating on a project.”

Here’s the requisite slick two-minute promotional video (played to the audience in AltspaceVR during the Microsoft Ignite event) which tries to impart what Microsoft Mesh is all about:

The Ignite event finale was a showstopper, promoting a still-in-development joint venture with Canada’s Cirque du Soleil called Hanai World, which featured not one, but FOUR people captured in volumetric video gathered around a magical campfire, 360-degree video of dancers and jugglers and other Cirque du Soleil performers, and AltspaceVR spectators (like me!) who were able to wander around and experience the space in 3D:

Afterward, there was a mix-and-mingle event which was attended by hundreds of AltspaceVR avatars (no bots, from what I could tell). It was the first time in almost a full year of pandemic lockdown that I truly felt that I was part of a crowd, and it reminded me of the big, splashy events that the old High Fidelity social VR platform used to hold, before they shut down. (*sigh* I still miss the old High Fidelity.)

The Microsoft Ignite mix-and-mingle afterparty in AltspaceVR (which was my first taste of being among a crowd of people in almost a whole year!)

Overall, it was a slick, very polished presentation, and I came away from it with a favourable impression. Other observers were less impressed with the show. Lucas Rizzotto sternly took Microsoft to task when he tweeted:

Microsoft Mesh’s announcement trailer is a highly misleading CG [Computer Generated] concept video that isn’t representative of what launched whatsoever. I love the HoloLens, but we really need to stop with these CG trailers. It’s setting false expectations & confusing EVERYONE.

Lucas continued:

To be clear, I don’t have a problem with “vision CG trailers”. Those can help audiences envision the future & they have a place in a marketer’s toolbelt. But this trailer was tied to an actual software release & that crosses a line. It’s advertising something that doesn’t exist.

I tried the app and was surprised to find something no different than Magic Leap’s Avatar Chat or Facebook Spaces. And honestly, that would have been fine to announce. They could have even done the CG bit later as a “Mesh in 5 years” segment. But they chose to mislead. Why?

Fabien Benetou linked to Lucas’s thread of tweets, saying:

I still didn’t have time check it BUT when I saw the hype and seeing some behind the scene professionally staffed green screen setup I did warn collaborators to NOT get excited before I can see what it actually is, not what it claims to be. Mind the marketing gap!

In my case, that initial “WOW!” first impression has not aged very well as I thought back about what I had seen. There was certainly lots of sizzle, but little evidence of actual steak: currently-available, deliverable VR/AR/XR/MR consumer product.

UPDATED March 6th, 2021: Charlie Fink alerted me to this technical overview of Microsoft Mesh, which you might find of interest (thanks, Charlie!).