The Oculus Quest 2 VR headset's guardian boundary system is already pretty robust, but it looks set to get a significant improvement soon.
A new feature called ‘Space Sense’, spotted by Twitter user Basti564 (via Upload VR), shows how the guardian, designed to show players the edge of their safe play space when wearing a VR headset, will soon be smart enough to show people, pets and other objects that enter into a roomscale playspace that could cause accidents.
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Guardian Intrusion Detection got replaced with Space Sense in the v32 Oculus Quest update pic.twitter.com/2pNHrptX8PSeptember 11, 2021
As shown in the video, those entering the playspace appear with a pink, ghostly outline, giving you the warning to get out of their way.
The video and feature remain hidden in the Quest v32 firmware, though can be accessed through command line settings. However, though the menus can be accessed, the feature doesn’t work even if switched on in the hidden menus.
Text accompanying the feature in the UI reads as follows:
"Enable Space Sense to see outlines of people and things inside your Roomscale boundary. Staying aware of what’s around you while in VR helps keep you and others safe.
"You can see outlines up to 9 feet away, as long as it’s still within your boundary and directly in front of your headset. You can turn this feature off at anytime in Settings."
Analysis: AR ambitions and useful upgrades
There’s been lots of talk recently about Oculus’s ventures into the world of augmented reality applications. That naturally leads people to think about augmented reality games and apps where the real world and digital world merge, like they do in mobile software like the mega-popular Pokemon Go.
But what’s perhaps more interesting, and useful, is use cases like this. It’s not a matter of making a dinosaur appear in your living room through an Oculus Quest headset (although that would be cool, too), but also improving the existing functionality of the device.
Just as Oculus recently added the ability to see certain keyboards in VR (like the Logitech K830), this Space Sense update improves the overall VR experience by easing some of the friction of interacting with both the real and digital worlds at the same time. As virtual reality uptake starts to head towards the mainstream, it’s thoughtful touches like Space Sense that will make it more attractive to first timers. We can’t wait to see it roll out to all users.
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