Qualcomm opens six extended reality R&D labs across Europe

Qualcomm opens six extended reality R&D labs across Europe

Enrico Salvatori.jpg

In a quest to bring extended reality to the masses Qualcomm Technologies has opened six R&D labs across Europe.

The labs will host extended reality (XR) research and development working, which will include engineering and key technology development in areas such as advanced hand tracking and gesture control, 3D mapping and SLAM/localisation services, multi-user experiences and image recognition.

The stated goal is to help design "lightweight, sleek headworn glasses and make innovative technology available for developers". While headworn glasses are the norm, these glasses will also be interactive thanks to Snapdragon Spaces. That's Qualcomm XR developer platform, which paves the way for "a new frontier" in spatial computing, by allowing developers to create immersive experiences for the metaverse in such areas as consumer, retail, industrial, enterprise, education and healthcare.

Enrico Salvatori (pictured), SVP and president, Qualcomm Europe, Inc., said: “The opportunities for XR are significant. Combine that with Europe’s rich R&D and leadership in XR and we see the XR labs in Europe as being a big contributor to XR development worldwide. Brilliant minds are already working at speed to realise our vision of XR and bring a plethora of revolutionary experiences to everyone from consumers, healthcare and industrial.

"These labs join our already significant R&D presence in Europe," he added. The labs are located in Amsterdam, Bordeaux, Kiev, Odessa, Salzburg, Vienna.

In its press statement Qualcomm said the openings are an extension of its investment in both XR and the Metaverse – both of which will be dependent on robust networks and widespread connectivity. The firm said of its work "such technologies are critical to create the experience that spans both physical and digital universes".

Sean Seaton, SVP group partnering and devices, Deutsche Telekom, said: “XR is the next stage of mobile computing and we are excited to see the opening of the Qualcomm XR R&D labs in Europe and we look forward to working closely with Qualcomm Technologies to bring our collective vision to reality.

"XR is incredibly exciting and stands to transform the way we work and live. 5G and future network innovations will empower experiences we could not have even imagined," Seaton continued.   

The developments follow on from Qualcomm Technologies' earlier gains in private 5G for which it collaborated with Capgemini to create an "off-the-shelf private network system which is fully tested and validated". The news also breaks a year after subsidiary business Qualcomm Communications SARL opened a new 5G R&D centre in France, from where it will work on " the future evolution of 5G and beyond".

Hugo Swart, VP and GM of XR, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., said: “A new era of spatial computing is upon us and working behind the scenes on a new generation of experiences has been inspirational.

"These labs will be the key to building out our XR portfolio which encompasses best-in-class platforms, software and innovative technology features and to make it available to all developers helping to build out the metaverse through Snapdragon Spaces. We cannot wait for everyone to see what is next.”

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