Snapdragon Spaces Blog

Snapdragon Spaces at MIT Reality Hack

Joining the world’s biggest XR hackathon as one of the key sponsors is a big endeavour that comes with a big responsibility. The team brought a dedicated Snapdragon Spaces™ hack track, two hosted workshops and networking events, showcased demos – to help hackathon participants stretch the limits of their imagination.

FEBRUARY 27, 2023

With five days full of tech workshops, talks, discussions and collaborations, the MIT hackathon brought together thought leaders, brand mentors, students, XR creators and technology lovers who flew from all over the world to participate. The overall event had 450 attendees. There were 350+ hackers from 26 countries placed into 70+ teams; and the Snapdragon Spaces track had 10 teams. All skill levels were represented, and participants had the opportunity to explore the latest technology from Qualcomm Technologies and Snapdragon Spaces.

The Snapdragon Spaces team joined other event key sponsors at the opening day Inspiration Expo. Using the opportunity to connect with participants, we answered questions about the XR developer platform, encouraged hackers to join the hack, and showcased our “AR Expo” demo. The demo uses Snapdragon Spaces SDK features, letting hackers experience a variety of AR use cases – from gaming to media streaming and kitchen assistance apps. Later on, hackers had the opportunity to join Steve Lukas, Director of XR Product Management at Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., and Rogue Fong, Senior Engineer at Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., at the workshop dedicated to developing lightweight AR glasses experiences. This augmented reality-focused session educated participants on the features and capabilities of the Snapdragon Spaces XR Developer Platform.

Closer collaboration with hackers followed at the Snapdragon Spaces hack track, where the team hosted 50 participants in 10 teams in a dedicated area for hacking. The range of project ideas was truly impressive, spanning games, social good projects, and education. While some projects leaned into the functionality of Lenovo ThinkReality A3 and Motorola edge+ phone HW devkit , others integrated additional hardware, such as 3D displays and neurofeedback devices.

Our track rewarded the most innovative, compelling and impactful experience using Snapdragon Spaces, with Stone Soup team taking the first prize for using AR technology to help the unhoused conceptualize, customize and co-create their dream homes. The winning project executed their idea with a high level of polish, utilizing Snapdragon Spaces’ Plane Detection and Hit Detection perception technology, and integrated ESRI maps data into their project.

The runner-up, Skully resented a multipurpose education technology solution that brought up learning modules and 3D models when target images are located. The solution offers students a hands-on approach to learning and allows using Hand Tracking and Gaze Tracking to interact with lesson material. Skully is highly inclusive and offers those unfamiliar with interacting with AR learning modules in the form of more traditional learning formats (such as video).

Worthy of honorable mention is Benvision – the winner of “Working together for inclusion and equality” for enabling the visually impaired to experience the world through a combination of the Snapdragon Spaces 6DoF headset plus a bespoke real-time machine learning algorithm which turns landscapes into soundscapes. Also, Up in the Air team, who won in “Spatial Audio” category, introduced the app that turns a daily working space into a pleasing fantasy-style environment, using Hand Tracking for navigation and Spatial Anchors to anchor a workspace in user’s environment.

MIT Reality Hack 2023 left a long-lasting impression on all the participants. The opportunity to engage with key partners, industry leaders, and a broad XR developer community brought a new perspective into the use and future development of spatial computing. Our team left inspired by unforgettable collaboration, ideation and creativity of the hackers and will be working on incorporating their valuable product feedback in the next SDK releases.

Snapdragon Spaces Developer team in collaboration with Qualcomm Developer Network

Snapdragon Spaces is a product of Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. and/or its subsidiaries.