virtuix omni mark cuban shark tank investment funding venture

The fantastically successful Virtuix Omni Kickstarter, the omni-directional treadmill, was one of the earlier VR related crowd funding hits. They attracted over 3000 backers and finished with a cool $1.1M, their original goal was just $150k.

Original backers who pledged against an Omni unit were given an estimate of January 2014 until their units began shipping. It was an ambitious target given the complexity of the design and sure enough 11 months after the original Kickstarter completed, backers are still waiting for their units.

The troublesome height adjustment assembly.
The troublesome height adjustment assembly.

Unfortunately for those backers (and those awaiting the chance to by this at retail), the company recently announced further delays. This time, the team report that the design of the support ring height adjustment mechanism has been found wanting and this has halted tooling for now. The good news is that the design team have made adjustments to address the issue and that design is ready for prime time. However, this pushed a likely ship date for the Omni back to Q3/Q4 2014.

It’s a painful blow for the Virtuix team, but they’re defiant in the face of such adversity, claiming they’d much rather suffer delays than cut corners on their inaugural device and the very first commercial omni-directional treadmill to be used by consumers.

SVVR a Success! Onwards to E3.

Say what you like about Virtuix and its founder Jan Goetgeluk, you could never accuse him and the team of standing idle. Over the last 18 months, Virtuix and its Omni has popped up at just about every major related trade fair and expo there is. So, when the SVVR team announced their intentions to hold the first commercial, consumer focussed virtual reality conference and expo, predictably Vituix signed up. The recent update takes time to praise SVVR Con’s organisers:

First and foremost, congratulations to the SVVR (“Silicon Valley Virtual Reality”) team for organizing a top-notch inaugural SVVR Conference. Every company in our emerging VR space was in attendance. Virtuix was a lead sponsor of the event, and Jan spoke on the panel regarding input and locomotion in VR.

E3 is inbound very soon and Virtuix will be present, this time showing off a new experience designed to showcase the Omni and virtual really. The new demo is called ‘Amsterdam by Night’ and seems to be a simple pitch at virtual tourism.

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The Road to VR team will be reporting from the show floor at the 2014 E3 Expo, we’ll try to catch up with the Virtuix team then.

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