AWE USA 2017 Press Conference

In Client News, Lightspeed PR by Ethan Rasiel

Did you miss AWE 2017 – the largest conference for AR+VR in Santa Clara, California May 31- June 2, 2017? Not to worry! Check out this YouTube video of the entire press conference, which includes all the highlights from the show.

The press conference was emceed by Lightspeed’s CEO and Co-Founder Ethan Rasiel. Listen closely for major announcements from big names like Sony, Epson and Meta as well as the hottest startups in AR and VR!

D2L: How To Build The Best Learning Platform

In Client News, Uncategorized by Ethan Rasiel

Kenneth Chapman, the VP of Market Strategy for our client D2L, recently authored a column in EdTech Digest about how D2L has built the best K-12 learning platform.

Chapman says D2L is constantly striving to stay on top of the needs of teachers and their goals in educating students. To do that, D2L talks with teachers for inspiration and guidance. Here are a couple of the key takeaways Chapman shared in his column:

  • Teachers love teaching. They love creating that spark and motivation in their students.
  • Teachers are incredibly resourceful. They find what they need, whether it’s tools, content, or technology, and plenty of it.

In his column, Chapman shared other takeaways and discussed the challenges – and solutions- to removing barriers in technology. Many teachers just don’t have the training, time or tools to deliver the best learning experience for all students.

“It’s our job in edtech to work to remove barriers to technology for everyone, from students to teachers to parents to administrators,” explains Chapman. “That means enabling all of the amazing teachers we’ve talked to, and all of their counterparts all across the technology spectrum, to use the best tools and techniques out there to be the very best educators possible.”

Learn more by reading Chapman’s full EdTech Digest column.

D2L Talks Intellectual Property On Bloomberg

In Client News by Ethan Rasiel

Our client D2L’s Co-Founder and Chief Strategy Officer Jeremy Auger recently sat down with Bloomberg TV Canada’s Amanda Lang. Auger told Lang that his education technology firm credits much of its market-leading position to the power of its intellectual property.

Lang and Auger discussed how crucial intellectual property protection is to a company’s success. The average S&P 500 firm has roughly 87 percent of its market value tied to intangible assets such as IP, according to merchant bank Ocean TOMO.

Watch the full segment above or click here to view in on Bloomberg TV Canada.

Top Trends From AWE 2017

In Client News, Lightspeed PR by Ethan Rasiel

We just got back from The Augmented World Expo (AWE), the largest and longest running conference and expo dedicated to augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR). With a record-breaking 212 exhibitors, 350 speakers, 300 journalists, 5,000 attendees and a mind-blowing 100,000-square-foot space, this was the biggest event in AWE’s 8-year history.

Announcements at AWE included innovations in entertainment, gaming and cinema, smart wearables, sensing toys, robotics and consumer electronics, cloud, enterprise and business technologies, human-computer interaction solutions, automotive, and high-performance APIs.

There were so many gadgets to play with and couldn’t believe how much bigger AWE was this year than last year. The explosion of groundbreaking AR and VR technologies is a sign that it’s becoming more mainstream.

Here are some of our favorite takeaways from AWE 2017:

1) Kopin’s Latest Innovations

For AR and VR to truly become mainstream, display technology must be good enough to blend into the real world. Our client Kopin is pushing the boundaries in improving the resolution of head-mounted displays and showed off its latest innovations in its Elf VR headset, which features two 2,048 x 2,048-resolution panels operating at a refresh rate of 120Hz. Not only was the visual fidelity well beyond current headsets, but everyone marveled over how small the headset is — much smaller than the Oculus Rift or HTC Vive.

2) Re’Flekt Enterprise Applications

Re’Flekt unveiled the first platform to support simultaneous direct publication and model-based tracking for the Microsoft Hololens. REFLEKT ONE enables any enterprise to create AR and MR scenarios for maintenance, operations and training on their own in a more affordable and scalable way.

3) Resonai Unveils Itself

At their booth, Resonai demonstrated Resonai Search, a shape-based search engine for VR/AR content. Resonai also unveiled their technology called Resonai Dollhouse, which scans a space and turns it into a VR environment that you can interact with in just seconds. The environment can be changed or manipulated in virtual reality. Prior to AWE, Resonai had been in total stealth mode.

To catch-up on all of the trends and news from AWE 2017, follow the expo @ARealityEvent or #AWE2017.

VR Headsets Shrinking In Size

In Client News, Lightspeed PR by Ethan Rasiel

Sunglass-sized virtual reality goggles are closer than we think, according to the latest story in Engadget.

Virtual reality headsets like the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive are bulky, front-heavy devices. Fortunately, our client Kopin revealed a new, 4K reference design VR headset at Augmented World Expo 2017 (AWE) that’s half the size of today’s consumer goggles.

Kopin’s prototype is at least a third smaller Google’s Cardboard viewer. How can they do that? It’s built around two tiny, low-power high resolution displays that measure just 1-inch diagonally. Engadget’s Sean Buckley said, “I only wore the rig for a few minutes, but during that time the compact, lightweight headset felt comfortable”.

To learn more about Kopin’s new technology, read the full story from Engadget.

Kopin Is Making AR Gear You Might Actually Wear

In Client News by Ethan Rasiel

In the future, our client Kopin tech might help you ditch your smartphone for an AR-enhanced life.

PC Magazine reports that Kopin unveiled its latest innovations, including a new 2,000-by-2,000 OLED VR headset reference design, at the Augmented World Expo in Santa Clara this week.

The wearables maker is partnering with companies including Google, Raytheon, and Intel. It’s also the largest US manufacturer of microdisplays for the US military.

In addition to these projects, Kopin has spun out a new brand called Solos, which produces AR cycling glasses. PC Magazine tested out a pair and called it “a remarkable experience”.

To learn more about the latest innovations that Kopin unveiled at AWE, read the full story from PC Magazine.

Brightspace To Replace Blackboard At Vanderbilt

In Client News by Ethan Rasiel

Vanderbilt announced that it will launch D2L’s Brightspace as its primary course management system in summer 2017. Brightspace will replace Blackboard, the university’s current system.

Brightspace was chosen after a yearlong needs assessment and vendor selection process involving faculty, staff and students.

“The move to Brightspace is part of Vanderbilt’s ongoing strategic effort to embrace educational technologies that foster innovation in learning, teaching and discovery,” Provost Susan R. Wente said. “Brightspace is a modern, responsive course management system that will support effective teaching across the entire campus.”

To learn more about the shift to Brightspace, read the full story from Vanderbilt.

Make More Money With Less Work

In Client News by Ethan Rasiel

U.S. News & World Report recently shared some simple moneymaking strategies. One of their strategies comes from Dirk Quayle, the founder, president and board member of our client NextCapital. NextCapital is a digital-advice firm based in Chicago.

Quayle explains that no one would turn down free money in theory, especially with compound interest. But that’s exactly what most folks do when they drop the ball on matching retirement funds when an employer offers them.

“A typical matching situation would be matching 50 percent of employee contributions for the first 6 percent of salary that an employee contributes,” Quayle says. “But many companies also offer a straight match of 100 percent up to a certain percentage.”

For more advice, click here for the full story.

Inside AARP’s Startup Incubator

In Client News by Ethan Rasiel

Lightspeed PR client AARP has a startup incubator. Really!

About a year ago, AARP launched Hatchery in NYC’s Chinatown. The Hatchery looks just like your standard startup office. While the Hatchery startups are currently distinct from AARP, they’re still staffed by AARP employees.

Andy Miller, SVP of innovation and product development, told that he wants to put AARP on the map as a corporate innovation leader.

To learn more about the Hatchery, read the full story from




Augmented World Expo Prepares for World’s Largest AR/VR Conference

In Client News by Ethan Rasiel

Forbes reported on the Augmented World Expo (AWE), the world’s largest and longest running conference and expo dedicated to augmented and virtual reality, which is coming to the Santa Clara Convention Center in Silicon Valley from May 31 – June 2.

Lightspeed PR client AWE will feature leading industry speakers like “Shots of Awe” filmmaker, philosopher and futurist Jason Silva and game designer, author and Carnegie Mellon scholar Jesse Schell.

5,000 attendees, 30% of whom represent Fortune 1000 companies, are expected to attend AWE. Founder Ori Inbar says attendees come looking for business solutions.

“AWE has become the place where Fortune 500 companies find business solutions, strategic partnerships are forged, funds raised, talent hired, and new startups are born,” Inbar explains.

For more details on AWE, read the full story from Forbes.