We got our first look at FOVE, the virtual reality headset that’s controlled by eye movement, at Disrupt SF 2014. FOVE was one of the entrants in the Startup Battlefield, and while the company didn’t win the competition, there were definitely some good times ahead for the company that started in the academic collaboration facility at the University of Tokyo.
FOVE launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund the headset back in May, with the goal of raising $250,000 to help bring its product to market. That campaign closed earlier this month and raised over $480,000 from nearly 1,500 backers.
Just before the campaign closed, FOVE introduced a new and vastly improved headset design that is lighter, smaller and more comfortable. The updated design looks pretty slick. According to the company, the form factor has been refined and enhanced to make the product more comfortable to wear, and updated clasps on the headset let the unit better adapt to different-shaped heads.
A few weeks ago, FOVE posted an update to its Kickstarter that they’ve secured additional funding (an undisclosed amount) from Samsung Ventures, which allowed the company to more aggressively pursue integration with the Valve Lighthouse personal tracking solution and OpenVR.
With a successful crowdfunding campaign under its belt, FOVE can now focus on getting its product in the hands of eager backers, as well as work to bring added functionality to its eye-tracking VR headset. The funding it received from Kickstarter backers and from Samsung Ventures is a good start, and time will tell where FOVE will be headed next.
Applications for this year’s Battlefield have formally closed, but there’s still hope. If you’re a startup that’s fewer than two years old, you can join us in the Startup Alley. On Monday and Tuesday of Disrupt, a wildcard out of the Alley is selected, by audience vote and editor selection, to pitch onstage as part of the Startup Battlefield.
The Wild Card company selected from Wednesday’s Alley will have an opportunity to demo onstage in front of the Disrupt audience.
You can buy Startup Alley tickets by clicking here. Hope to see you there!
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