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Thursday, July 01, 2010
Qualcomm Establishes Augmented Reality Game Studio


Qualcomm Incorporated has joined forces with the Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) to establish the Qualcomm Augmented Reality Game Studio, a research and design center aimed at pioneering new advancements in mobile gaming and interactive media.

Located on Georgia Tech's Atlanta campus, the game studio will build upon Qualcomm's newly announced augmented reality platform and related graphics technologies to produce new application concepts and prototypes.

"Georgia Tech continues to be at the forefront of augmented reality innovation," said Matt Grob, senior vice president of engineering and head of corporate research and development at Qualcomm. "For more than 12 years, the university's Augmented Environments Lab has been researching ways to enhance a user's senses by creating interactive computing environments. Now, with Qualcomm's new augmented reality platform, we are working together to further advance the user experience by extending virtual gaming experiences into the real world."

The Qualcomm Augmented Reality Game Studio will be led by augmented reality researcher and Associate Professor of Interactive Computing Dr. Blair MacIntyre, director of Georgia Tech's Augmented Environments Lab. The lab is part of Georgia Tech's GVU Center, a world-renowned research center that brings together students and faculty from across the university to study problems at the intersection of people and technology. In collaboration with students and faculty from the Savannah College of Art and Design, MacIntyre will combine the skills and creative insight of students with expertise in augmented reality technology, game development and the arts.

"Powerful processors and sophisticated graphics engines in today's mobile devices have only recently reached the point where they can meet the computing requirements for augmented reality," said MacIntyre. "By collaborating with Qualcomm, we'll have access to both the high-end hardware and core augmented reality technology that will enable us to push the envelope in game development. We are very excited to work with Qualcomm as we explore new frontiers in augmented reality gaming."

Qualcomm also announced the inaugural Augmented Reality Application Developer Challenge, an international competition to spotlight the best applications developed using Qualcomm's augmented reality platform and software development kit (SDK). Awards totaling $200,000 are up for grabs and will be awarded to individuals or companies demonstrating the most effective, entertaining and functional new application products.

"Qualcomm is introducing a powerful platform to enable a new class of mobile user interface ? one that has the potential to change the way we experience and interact with the environment around us," said Jay Wright, director of business development for Qualcomm. "The Application Developer Challenge is our way of spurring this next wave of innovation, and we are excited to see what developers will create."

Vision-based augmented reality enables mobile applications that merge reality and cyberspace.

Qualcomm's Augmented Reality Application Developer Challenge will commence in Fall 2010 when the SDK is made available for public download. Detailed rules, eligibility criteria and other applicable requirements/conditions for the Challenge will be announced at a later date.

Application submissions are scheduled to commence in November 2010 and be accepted through January 7, 2011. From the pool of submitted applications, three winners will be announced at Mobile World Congress 2011 to win cash prizes of $125,000 for first place, $50,000 for second place, and $25,000 for third place.

Additional details on Qualcomm's Augmented Reality Application Developer Challenge, candidate eligibility and submission guidelines are available at www.qdevnet.com/ar.


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