Google Daydream Seurat Touts PC-level Graphics on Mobile

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The benefit of a tethered, desktop-powered virtual reality
setup is that you can get significantly more visual fidelity
from a PC with a GeForce GTX 1080 graphics card plugged into a
power outlet as opposed to the tiny, battery-powered GPU in a
phone. But Google is claiming that could change.

Google has developed a technology called Seurat that makes it
easier to render lifelike, highly detailed 3D environments on a
mobile VR headset. While companies like Nvidia and Qualcomm
have beefed up the graphics capabilities of smartphones in
recent years, those tiny chips still lag behind massive PC
cards. But instead of trying to brute force pixels onto its
Daydream headsets with more power, Google is using software to
enable developers to render beautiful scenes in real time. And
Hollywood effects house Industrial Light and Magic’s
experimental division, ILMxLab, has already used Seurat to
bring some of the assets it built for Rogue One: A
Star Wars Story
to life in a VR experience.

“When xLab was approached by Google, they said they could take
our ILM renders and make them run in real-time in VR,” ILMxLab
senior UX engineer Lewey Geselowitz said in a video about
Seurat. “Turns out that’s true. I really think we’re onto
something.”

Google’s not explaining exactly how this technology works —
although it is promising to reveal more later this…

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