Plexus Immersive Corp, a San Francisco-based startup, announced a pair of VR gloves that integrate haptic feedback and interface with multiple tracking standards, including SteamVR, Oculus Rift, and Windows “Mixed Reality” VR. Dubbed Plexus, a pair of dev kit gloves will cost $250, and a waitlist in now available through the company’s website.
Update (July 3rd, 2018): It was previously reported that pre-orders were actively being taken, when in reality the company has only opened up reservation spots for interested developers. The headline and body of the article has been corrected to reflect this.
Plexus is made from a flexible silicone, which provides the internal electronics a measure of water resistance. The company says in a Reddit post that users will be able to rinse the glove under a tap for a quick wash. Dev kits are said to come with a pair of standard medium size gloves, although the company intends on providing smaller and larger sizes for the consumer launch, slated for sometime next year.
Like many VR gloves, haptic feedback is generated by linear resistant actuators (LRAs), which are similar to the vibrating motors found in game controllers and smartphones, but placed on each fingertip of the glove. The company says they’re currently working on replacing the LRAs with “new linear actuators that will offer a much wider range of tactile sensations though.”
The company previously prototyped a model with force feedback, which would allow you to feel resistance when manipulating a virtual object, although it won’t be available in the current model.
The gloves, at least from promotional material, appear to be really quite thin. This is hampered somewhat by the addition of current consumer trackers, but if the halo tracker can really provide tracking as accurate as the more bulky motion controllers, Plexus may be one of the first VR gloves to offer an all-in-one tracking design.
- Measurement System: 21 Degrees of freedom per hand
- Tactile Feedback: 5 (one per finger) tactile actuators
- Wireless: 2.4GHz Custom Low Latency Protocol
- Compatibility: Unity, Unreal Engine, C++, C#, Python
- SDK: Unity and Unreal Engine haptic rapid application development toolkit, including drop in haptic hand rigs and interactive objects ready to use with developer artwork assets
- Compatibility: VR Integration / tracking options: Vive, Oculus Rift, Windows Mixed Reality. Can be used with any Windows, Linux or Mac environment through the C++ and Python API
- Battery life: 2 to 3 hours depending on feedback usage
Refresh rate: 180hz, engine synchronized for VR