Noitom Enters Spatially Tracked Glove Market With Hi5 VR Glove Business Edition

Updated03/21/2018, 3:20pm PT: Replaced images with high-resolution copies.

Noitom today announced that the Hi5 VR Gloves Business Edition is now available to order. The kit includes two gloves with full finger tracking. You’ll need a pair of Vive Trackers and an HTC Vive to use them, though.

Last year at CES, Noitom revealed the Hi5 VR Gloves, which bring your hands and fingers directly into VR experiences. The company partnered with HTC to demonstrate a prototype of its glove peripheral as part of HTC's Vive Tracker showcase at CES, but we didn’t hear much more from Noitom about the Hi5 VR Gloves for the rest of 2017. CES 2018 also rolled by without a new look at the Hi5 gloves, but Noitom showed up in full-force this week for GDC. The company today revealed a business-class version of the Hi5 Gloves that you can purchase now.

The Hi5 VR Gloves Business Edition is tailored for professional use cases. Noitom isn’t yet ready to tackle the consumer market, even though that was the goal when it revealed the Hi5 VR Gloves a year ago. Noitom is marketing the Business Edition of its VR gloves to companies and entrepreneurs that wish to build VR entertainment experiences and educational products that can benefit from fully tracked fingers. All Hi5 VR Gloves Business Edition units include commercial licensing that grants owners the freedom to use the Hi5 gloves for profit. The gloves are also made of a hygienic antibacterial material which is breathable, easy to clean, and suitable for sharing with multiple people.

The Hi5 VR Gloves Business Edition offer full finger tracking with 9-degrees of freedom. The Hi5 gloves feature IMU-based tracking technology derived from Noitom’s Perception Neuron MoCop system. The IMUs include gyroscopes, accelerometers, and magnetometers to calculate precise orientation changes with less than 5ms of latency. The Hi5 VR gloves also include programmable vibration rumblers to provide haptic feedback when grasping virtual objects.  

The Hi5 VR Gloves Business Edition are fully wireless devices. The package includes a USB dongle for wireless communication. The gloves don’t even need to be plugged in to charge. The company said it went with disposable batteries because it’s quicker to swap a set of batteries than to wait for a controller to charge. Each controller runs off one AA cell.

When Noitom revealed the Hi5 VR Gloves last year, the company said that they would be compatible with OptiTrack’s marker-based tracking motion capture technology. However, the device that came to market today requires an HTC Vive Tracker to function. It is not compatible with other room-tracking systems. The Hi5 VR Gloves include wrist mounts for the Trackers.

The Noitom Hi5 VR Gloves Business Edition are available now from the company’s website. Noitom is asking $999 for the package, which includes two gloves, the wireless dongle, and instruction. The package does not include Vive Tracker, of which you would need two. Noitom offers Vive Tracker through its website, which you can purchase for $99 each. However, Noitom is currently selling Vive Tracker 1.0 models, which HTC is phasing out in favor of the Vive Tracker 2018, so you may want to buy the trackers direct from HTC.

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Sensor9-DOF IMU for each glove (Ultra-low hysteresis);
IMU*7/ glove
AccuracyRoll/pitch accuracy (dynamics): 1.0° (RMS);
Heading accuracy: 2.0° (RMS); Resolution: 0.1
Battery Life>3 hours continuous working time on a full charge (1AA battery 2100mAh); Replaceable AA battery (1 battery for each glove; battery not included); low battery alert
Supply Voltage1.1-1.5VDC with one AA battery for each Glove;
5.0VDC for dongle (USB 2.0)
Latency<5ms (from motion to SDK, under clean RF conditions)
Output Data Rate180Hz
CommunicationWireless communication (between Gloves and Dongle); 2.4Ghz radio frequency (private protocol)
RF PerformanceRF working area: 5m*5m; Supports multiple users (up to 6) in the same field simultaneously (automatic channel-switching to avoid RF interface)
Vibration Feedback1 Programmable vibrator on each glove’s wrist
TextileAntibacterial, breathable elastic textile
SDKUnity SDK, Unreal SDK and sample scenes for both engines

 Kevin Carbotte is a contributing writer for Tom's Hardware who primarily covers VR and AR hardware. He has been writing for us for more than four years. 

  • Specter0420
    This could be very nice for Simulators. You can wear them and still use your expensive joystick/wheel, and flip switches in a realistic way with your fingers.