Augmented reality company, Mira, recently announced $1.5 million in seed funding courtesy of Sequoia Capital, S-Cubed Capital, Troy Capital Partners, Marc Benioff, will.i.am, Jens Christensen and others. The company is known for working toward ways to enhance how humans interact with each other and technology itself.
Mira also announced the exciting new Prism headset they will be offering soon. It is available for preorder with shipments for developers expected this fall and consumers shipments available for the holiday season. This headset is an untethered, minimalist AR headset that works with an iPhone seamlessly.
Use of Funding
The funding dollars Mira has received from investors are expected to be used to manufacture the Prism headset, as well as to develop a software toolkit and consumer facing content.
“As developers, we wanted a way to build and experiment in AR without the need for expensive equipment, and as AR enthusiasts, we wanted the opportunity to play and explore without limits. We challenged ourselves to build a mobile headset that would make AR accessible to anyone,” said Ben Taft, co-founder and CEO of Mira. “Prism is a bridge between the physical and digital worlds and Mira is creating the thread that lets people connect and share experiences.”
More About Prism
The headset and included remote were created to work with current iPhones to offer a premium augmented reality experience for a much cheaper price than currently available options. The headset is easy to use and it begins when a user opens and app on their iPhone and then slides the phone into the headset. From there, they can explore holographic content with interactive elements. The use of a clear lens lets users remain in the present, rather than creating an isolated effect common with virtual reality.
Mire has worked with immersive content studios to build a suit of AR experiences that developers and consumers can enjoy, all of which will be include with the Prism headset. Everything from holographic chess and warship battles to mixed-reality puzzles and multiplayer games will be a part of the package, allowing a dynamic and social experience.
The remote for the headset tracks things like rotation and acceleration to enhance experiences. For instance, the buttons might be used as a paintbrush or fishing rod, depending on the game or program being experienced.
“We are increasingly fascinated with digital reality and AR, and blending both the real and virtual worlds,” cofounder and CEO of Mira, Ben Taft, told GamesBeat. “We wanted to experiment, but the only way to do that was with kits that cost thousands of dollars. We couldn’t do that, and so Mira was born out of necessity.”
The engine for the headset is powered by Unity 3D and the software development kit (SDK) will be able to be downloaded, letting people change assets or build their own for use with the innovative headset. Developers can create multiplayer experiences that extend beyond the screen and publish the work to a large market of millions of mobile users.