Foveated Rendering

How to achieve high-enough performance in virtual reality systems to avoid dizziness and motion sickness.


Virtual Reality (VR) is becoming increasingly popular due to its ability to immerse the user into an experience. Those experiences can vary from watching a movie in a simulated theatre, having a look at your personal pictures as though they were paintings in a museum or finding yourself in front row seats of a huge sporting event. These specific experiences don’t stress the device hardware to its maximum limit, and are usually less demanding compared to the other mainstream VR experience; gaming. The “new” era of VR is born with gaming as the main driving force, and that is reflected by the number of announcements made about VR at gaming and graphics conferences such as GDC and E3. The revolution started for desktops computers with the first developer kits, and gradually expanded to affect the mobile. With the introduction of the Samsung GearVR and Google Daydream consumer headsets, which simplified and expanded the VR adoption thanks to cable-free usage, lower prices and a focus on mass market users saw a distinct advantage of mobile compared to similar desktop counterparts.

Gaming is still the biggest driver of VR even on mobile, and that puts pressure on the performance of the whole system. It is worth remembering that the performance of a VR application is an important factor to its usability, since low or varying performance will cause the typical negative impacts of VR on a person, such as dizziness and motion sickness.

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