U.S. Spends More on AI as Advanced Tech Continues to Expand

Emerging Tech Roundup — June 11

The Quantious team’s top picks for timely trending news in the tech world.

This week in tech: The Pentagon requests near $1 billion for AI and ML, Apple introduces new Live Text feature, Apple is predicted to launch AR/VR headset, Facebook predicts AR/VR spending to grow 6x by 2024, the Senate passes a bill to advance AI research, Oculus Quest increases their Guardian boundaries, and VR Fails are used as learning experiences for VR developers.

Pentagon to Spend $874 Million on Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning

(Intelligent Aerospace, June 7)

The Pentagon has submitted a budget request of $874 million to further knowledge in tech. The Army is asking for a sum of $26.1 million for AI and ML basic research, applied research, and advanced technologies. The investment will contribute to research of hypersonic technology, cyber and quantum computing, neuroscience, novel engineered materials and biology, understanding behaviors, manufacturing sciences, and more. The Pentagon believes that such a budget grant will keep the playing field level for the US against other countries, such as China.

Apple’s Live Text Is Going to Read All the Text in All Your Photos with AI

(The Verge, June 7)

Apple’s new iOS 15 feature live text will allow for copy-and-paste, photo-to-email, photo-to-text functions, and more. Apple announced that the feature will support 7 languages. Users will also be able to search their camera roll for both text and other visual components within photos, such as “art, books, nature, pets, and landmarks,” for example.

Apple’s Augmented Reality Headset Launching Q2 of Next Year

(9to5Mac, June 8)

Apple Analyst Ming Chi-Kuo is expecting Apple to release an AR headset in Q2 of 2022. Kuo expects the headset to be made up of 15 cameras, both on the inside and outside, and have eye-tracking capabilities for enhanced AR and possibly, VR experiences. Apple’s release of a headset has been speculated for some time, though the company has not said much officially.

Facebook Predicts Worldwide Spending on VR/AR to Grow 6x from 2020 to 2024

(Inside XR, June 8)

Facebook searches conducted by users suggest a growing interest in the unique interactions that VR/AR has to offer. Demand for VR/AR is increasing heavily as online, social interactions are becoming more consistent and comfortable to users. Facebook’s research also suggested that 75% of business leaders anticipated usage of VR/AR in their business models by 2023, contributing to the predicted growth of 6x by 2024.

Senate Passes Bill to Boost U.S. Tech Industry to Counter Rivals

(PBS, June 8)

The Senate has just passed a bill for the largest scientific research investment within the U.S. in decades, totaling a cost of $250 billion. The bill will allow for increased research in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and quantum science, while pairing with the National Science Foundation. Up to $29 billion will be channeled into this research and an additional $52 billion will be put forth into the branch’s programs.

Oculus Quest Maximum Guardian Size Growing to 15 Meters

(UploadVR, June 9)

Oculus Quest is updating their software to allow for virtual walls up to 49 feet long and Guardian boundaries reaching over 2,400 square feet. This update gives users an extra 5 meters in either direction, compared to the previous boundaries. The update may also include “intrusion detection” in which users will be warned if they come close to anything larger than a human hand during their VR experience.

New Study Analyzes Disastrous VR Fails, For Science

(Digital Trends, June 10)

By acknowledging VR fails, researchers are hoping to improve VR developer’s creations and the functionality of VR. Such fails include headsets falling off, users colliding into walls or furniture around them, and other fails due to the highly immersive experiences causing users to forget that they are, in fact, still in a real world with real surroundings. One proposed solution to VR fails is the experimentation of an infinite walking VR simulation, but this is not yet set in stone.

The Quantious team