Leap Motion Releases Orion VR Beta Tracking Software & It’s Amazing!

“The Orion VR Beta Takes Hand Tracking To The NEXT LEVEL!!!”

Today Leap Motion unveiled a new software package named “Orion” that is supposed to fundamentally change how the Leap previously handled hand tracking. Although the information has been somewhat vague, we can assume that an entire overhaul of code has been introduced in order to separate previous algorithms which were unnecessary for VR usage (the leap originally was created to be placed flat on a surface).
If you’ve had some experience with the Leap Motion before than you will know what an amazing piece of technology that it can be. You will also no doubt know how awful it can be and how inaccurate it becomes in bright laggy situations. Luckily a lot of the software fixes with Orion significantly help performance and allow for a much better user experience.
Most notable advantages of using Orion VR Beta:
  • Lower latency & Lower overall CPU usage
  • Enhanced tracking range that extends to the full length of your arms
  • Better tracking on the edge of the field of view
  • Significantly improved grab-and-drop interactions
  • Faster and better initialization for all hands
If you’d like to see a complete list of What’s New as well as Known Issues click HERE.
The Orion zip file is 370MB, it took me about five minutes to download and another two minutes to install. In less than 10 minutes after visiting the website I was already running the Orion VR Beta on my PC. The moment I started it up the hand tracking began to recognize my hands resting on my chair. This simple demonstration showed me that the Orion tracking has most certainly improved the range, speed, and overall effectiveness of the Leap Motion.

“Having your hands in VR & having them tracked CORRECTLY is also a MUST!”

If you have a Leap Motion you MUST try out the new Orion upgrade immediately! Having your hands inside of VR applications is easily one of the quickest ways to feel immersed. Having your hands in VR and having them tracked CORRECTLY is also a MUST! So far this is the closest I have seen to a near perfect hand tracking device. The fact that it does so well with just an infrared camera is very impressive. I can’t wait to see how they integrate their hardware and software into future VR HMD’s. Surely the market will be full of input devices, but I believe that hand tracking will be one of the most used methods.

Developing in Unity?

The Unity game engine includes built-in support for VR development. If you would like to begin building with Leap Motion Orion, make sure you have Unity 5.3 installed. Setup instructions and older asset versions can be found by clicking HERE.
*Also, Feburary 18th, 2016 at 2pm PT, LeapMotion CTO David Holz will be holding an AMA on Reddit to answer any questions about Orion-VR. Be sure to let him know what you think!
Click HERE to visit the Developer Gallery where you can download all sorts of different experiences made specifically for Leap VR! My favorite at this time is easily “Blocks“! When playing you can easily create different shapes, turn on and off gravity, and throw objects at a silly robot. I played for 30 minutes my first time in. Really excited for where this is going!
If you have any questions about Leap Motion or about my personal experiences and developments feel free to send me a message or leave a comment below! I really love this technology and can’t wait to see it progress even further from this point.. because it is very good now.. it will only get better! Thanks for reading!


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