Valve SteamVR's latest version, 1.16.8,

1 min read
27 Feb

OpenXR is a new standard that provides an API for VR and AR content, allowing game developers to write code that is cross-platform compatible. Previously, major corporations such as Microsoft, Valve, and Facebook had their own VR/AR content APIs. To ensure that their content worked on different headsets and platforms, developers had to implement multiple APIs, which was often time consuming and difficult to integrate.

OpenXR addresses this issue by providing a single API that can used across all platforms and devices. Khronos, a non-profit industry consortium which also manages OpenGL, has developed it. Microsoft and Facebook both announced support for OpenXR late last year and pushed the standard to become the developers' new default.

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Valve announced in the middle of last year that future SteamVR features would use OpenXR instead of OpenVR, signaling a shift away from OpenVR. With SteamVR now adding full support, however, Valve is the last of the big three on its platform to fully embrace OpenXR.

On the software side, Microsoft announced in July last year that OpenXR would now support the Render Dragon rendering engine for Minecraft. Meanwhile, Facebook has added Phase Sync to Unity and Unreal integrations that use OpenXR to reduce latency.

"The SteamVR update also includes some other new settings, such as "per-app settings to override automatic throttling and prediction of behavior," which Valve says is good for applications such as "particularly poor performance simulators that benefit... from a fixed lower frame rate for a smoother overall experience. We can read here the full SteamVR update notes.

Virtual Reality, Augmented and Artificial Intelligence 2021 specialist Amit Caesar wrote the article.
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