Fathom VR

Industrial Design

Back in 1996, StudioRed helped design one of the very first mass-produced VR systems for Virtuality. Fast forward 22 years, and virtual reality, augmented reality and mixed reality are part of a multibillion dollar industry. StudioRed took this opportunity to study and understand the current state of the industry and learn more about the VR user’s experience by studying painpoints and interaction points. Through this study, StudioRed designed the Fathom VR headset. This headset was built around solving many of the current painpoints of virtual and augmented reality. One of the most important new features is the smartglass that this headset uses. Rather than just focusing on one “reality” (Virtual reality, Augmented reality, Mixed reality) this headset allows the user to use it for any of those applications. By turning the glass from clear to opaque, the headset can go from a mixed or augmented  reality into complete virtual reality. Sound plays an important role in guiding us to another “reality”. As a headset focused on the gaming industry, we felt this experience should focus heavily on the sound, while still staying current with the visuals.  Additionally, we developed this form to convey the focus on the audio experience. The users interaction points were our next main focus in this study. Many of the current solutions have unintuitive controls, leaving users fumbling around with their hands, and making the experience less enjoyable. Small ergonomic design cues were used to help lead the user through the interface in a more intuitive manner.  You can control or select by using touch pad on the headset’s ears.  Finally, the bulkiness of current solutions was focused on. While the current solutions have the user wearing a huge form on their head, that are not particularly comfortable, or easy to wear, we wanted to create a solution that would be visually appealing, while still feeling minimalistic and smooth to the users face.


Back in 1996, StudioRed helped design one of the very first mass-produced VR systems for Virtuality.