Two years ago London-based Proteus VR Labs launched the Freefly, which was marketed as one of the first mobile phone powered VR headsets. The company is now back with Freefly FF3 – a hybrid augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) headset.
Like its predecessor, the team have once again created a Crowdcube crowdfunding campaign in order to raise the funds to tool, market and launch the new Freefly FF3 headset.
However, unlike its predecessor, the patent pending wide-angle lens system, which upgrades the user’s back facing camera, widens the mixed reality ‘play area’ to a whopping 180°. This, the company claims, improves on the limited field of views of dedicated mixed reality headsets.
Proteus VR Labs have once again worked with London-based product design consultancy Luma-iD on the design of the headset. Luma-iD and Jonathan Tustain, who came up with the original Freefly headset, formed Proteus VR Labs a few years ago to market the headset and take it into production (the full product development story of the Freefly featured as our cover story in June 2015 and can be read here).
“It’s been really exciting to finally show the world our new headset, Freefly FF3 – we have tried to pack this design with lots of innovate features, reflective side panels to give the feeling of increased immersion, removal side panels – so you can create a Hololens-like setup for more natural AR, synchronised rollers to align any phone and a fully adjustable AR wide-angle lens,” says Mark Little head of design at Luma-iD.
“The challenge has to been to design this in something that looks attractive, is as lightweight as possible and easy for the user to work with.”
A fully working prototype of the Freefly FF3 is now built and with a global network of interested retailers who already stock existing Freely products, Proteus VR Labs are looking to take it into production following the Crowdcube campaign.