Mysterious company Magic Leap is keeping its tech a total secret; not much is known about what it's building or when a consumer product will be released. But new details emerged on Thursday that the company is working with Lucasfilm to bring mixed reality Star Wars experiences to your home.
Lucasfilm's ILMxLAB, its immersive entertainment division, is partnering with the company to build content for Magic Leap's platform, Wired reports. In a teaser video called "Lost Droids," filmed entirely through Magic Leap, R2-D2 and C-3PO talk directly to you, and wander around a room as if they're really there, displaying a holographic map on a table.
"I regret to report that due to unforeseen circumstances, we have not yet reached the desired arrangement with Jabba the Hutt regarding Captain Solo’s debt," C-3PO says.
Magic Leap is a darling of the tech world, despite no one really knowing what it does. It promises virtual and augmented reality experiences that are truly life-like, and is valued at $4.5 billion. In 2014, Google invested $542 million in the company. And yet, we haven't seen what the company does beyond mind-bending videos that excite people about the possibilities of virtual and augmented reality.
VR and AR are still relatively nascent technologies, and despite (expensive) headsets finally coming on the market and exploring the capabilities of these new technologies, many people are still flummoxed as to why or how they should use or consume mixed reality content. Microsoft's AR headset, that, at first blush, seems similar to what Magic Leap is doing, is not available to consumers and comes at a hefty price for developers.
According to xLab's Vicki Dobbs Beck, the tech and opportunities produced through the partnership are pretty incredible: “I’ve spent 24 years at ILM, but I cannot recall anything that looks or feels like this,” Beck told Wired. “I’ve never seen anything where we’ll be innovating on both a creative and technological level in such close proximity.”
What the partnership actually entails, much like Magic Leap itself, remains to be seen. For now, we have a cool video to watch and imagine the possibilities.