CES 2014: Omni gaming harness uses capacitive sensors for mapping your motion
We have had the fortune of coming across quite a few gaming oriented contrivances in CES 2014, be it Alienware’s Steam Machine or Razer’s modular gaming PC. However this time around, the so-called Omni from Virtuix takes things to a whole new level with its exclusive status as a virtual reality interface. In the other words, the innovative conception comprises of an entire system that allows your real-time leg movements to be synced up with virtual (in-game) environments. The entire contraption is camera-free, while it also exhibits unique capacitive panels that are used for tracking our motions and their directions.
The working scope of the Omni entails three rings of such capacitive sensors arranged in concentric circles (with small gaps in-between) beneath the curved floor. These sensors map your movement from the pressure generated from your steps. This data is finally translated to the normal gaming key maps for walking or running or stealth mode. The data can also be used for analog movement patterns for specific games designed for the ambit.
Anyhow, the greatest feature of this virtual reality interface would surely be its ability to track your 360 degrees movement (which is still in works). This can make Omni’s movement mapping totally independent from the direction control of gaming headsets like Oculus Rift. However, the Virtuix team is also looking forth to utilize technologies like SixSense’s magnetic field that would eschew the need for cameras when head tracking in a wireless mode, thus allowing the interface to be paired with Rift.
Lastly, we should expect an Omni SDK, with a third party developer claimed to be working on a dedicated game that shows off the kit’s features. In any case, the Omni is likely to make its commercial landfall by May of this year, with starting price point of $500 for the entire system.
You can make your pre-orders by following Virtuix’s home link.