Sony releases Motion-Tracking Metaverse Wearables Mocopi

With a retail price of 49,500 yen (about $358), Sony has introduced an intriguing gadget called Mocopi, which consists of six motion-tracking bands worn on your wrists, feet, back, and head. The idea is to enable you to use metaverse applications like VRChat to monitor your body while making films or controlling avatars in real time. Even an SDK is available, allowing you to import motion data into 3D animation programs.

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According to Sony, Mocopi, a play on the term "mocap," uses "proprietary technology and a smartphone" with a special app. It has six color-coded, lightweight motion sensors. "Typically, motion capture video production calls for specialized tools and personnel.

Sony stated that “By utilizing our proprietary algorithm, 'Mocopi' realizes highly accurate motion measurement with a small number of sensors, freeing VTubers [virtual YouTubers] and creators involved in movie and animation production from time and place constraints."

On December 15th, Sony will make a software development kit (SDK) available, along with the real-time programming environment Unity and the animation/mocap tool MotionBuilder from Autodesk, that connects the motion capture data with metaverse services. This SDK broadens the usage of motion data for tasks like full-body monitoring, supporting the creation of new services in domains like fitness and the metaverse.

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Sony demonstrates how to calibrate the sensors, strap them to your body, and couple them with the app in the how-to video (below). After that, you may start dancing or making other motions, and the in-app avatars will imitate your movements. Although the second video above (which shows some avatar animations) is visually appealing, it does have some typical motion capture flaws, like jitter and foot sliding.

If you have a device running iOS 15.7.1 or Android 11, Sony notes that you can use existing VRM avatars and export recorded videos in the MP4 format. It will be on sale in late January 2023 after reservations open in mid-December 2022, although North American availability is yet unknown.


Pre-order sales are expected to start in the middle of December and will cost 49,500 yen (roughly $358). Starting on December 15, a software development kit connecting motion data to metaverse services will also be accessible.
 

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