Yaw VR turns virtual driver’s seat into immersive experience

If traditional virtual reality experiences aren’t cutting it for you, perhaps you need to add another layer of immersion. Yaw VR, a motion simulator, fashions itself as “the world’s most compact and affordable” VR experience of its kind. Created by the Hungary-based startup Intellisense, the project has already raised more than a third of its $150,000 crowdfunding goal on Kickstarter.

Users sit inside a spherical dome and place their feet on an attached footrest. From there, Yaw achieves a full 360 degrees of movement vertically, and 50 degrees of freedom horizontally using small electric motors. Both marks, according to Intellisense, prove impressive compared to industrial motion simulators, especially when considering Yaw’s price.

Right now, early bird backers can pledge $890 to receive a unit in August. Once those slots are filled, the regular price of Yaw VR is $1,190. While by no means cheap, with the market for this type of product basically non-existent, it’s hard to compare it to anything else.

When you wrap up a session, all of the parts stored in the dome, which is then flipped for easy storage and portability. The entire contraption amazingly weighs a mere 33 pounds.

Targeted at gamers, Yaw will be compatible with SimTools, and is said to work with more than 80 different simulator apps already. Those who pre-order will receive four apps for free: A flight simulator, a racing sim, a space battle game, and a roller-coaster sim. Additionally, the kit is designed to work with PlayStation VR, Oculus Go, Gear VR, and regular PC games. Users can also develop their own open-source software for Yaw.

To add even more to the gaming experience, Intellisense will package an adjustable pedal, steering wheel, and joystick holders. Simulator enthusiasts can attach their flight sim sticks and high-end racing wheels to Yaw.

Yaw supports up to 330 pounds of weight and can move 120 degrees per second using just 40 percent of its max power. Its lightweight design and small motors allow it to run virtually silent throughout its movement.

It remains to be seen how durable Yaw VR will be through continued use. It’s worth noting that Intellisense will also release a Yaw VR Pro “designed for extreme intensive use” at the same time. Pledges of $1,340 secure the Pro edition and also let you fit your motion simulator with a custom color pattern.

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