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Gesture Recognition and Hand Tracking and Leveling Up Entertainment Experiences: Here’s How


Charlotte Mallo

Entertainment for Everyone with Hand Tracking and Gesture Recognition

From gaming to Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality museums, hand tracking and gesture recognition are powering some of the most engaging experiences in entertainment, even from your smartphone, 

Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality entertainment is no longer a niche market. It’s a blue ocean of opportunity for the biggest names in entertainment in everything from their ongoing streaming wars to record-breaking game titles. In this highly competitive market, how can hand tracking and gesture recognition enhance your audiences’ experience?

Virtual Reality Gaming

Half-Life: Alyx by Valve Corporation was a blockbuster among Virtual Reality exclusive titles, even performing modestly by the standards of AAA games. Since its release on March 23 this year, sales of the game have generated $40.7M in revenue. The highly anticipated action packed game took four years to create as developers worked on some of the most sophisticated game mechanics we have ever seen.

To elevate immersion, Valve released the Valve Index controllers to integrate finger tracking for an authentic game play experience. Next, to compete with the Oculus Quest hand tracking and gesture recognition that was released just prior to Half-Life: Alyx, games will need to level up by integrating custom hand tracking solutions.

Augmented Reality Gaming

The Sims, a life simulation game, is one of the best-selling video game series of all time. Players create virtual people and virtual homes that are a part of a larger virtual world. First launching with The Sims in 1989, the series was so successful that in 2018, EA (Electronic Arts) launched Sims FreePlay AR.

Using Augmented Reality to merge the game with the physical world, players use the screen on their mobile device or tablet to “pinch”, “expand” or “rotate” to place homes and further customize in build mode. The elaborate in-game design process means that players need to perform many intricate and precise interactions that hand tracking and gesture recognition could greatly enhance. Not to mention multiplayer mode- where hand tracking technology could simultaneously track multiple player gestures.


As the streaming wars continue between HBO, Netflix, Hulu, Disney, and Amazon Prime, a few have emerged in Virtual Reality platforms that enable viewers to sit back, relax, and enjoy the show with a theatre sized virtual screen and private or shared viewing room.

For example, using the Nreal Augmented Reality headset, users can scroll through smartphone apps, and select YouTube, Netflix, among other apps for entertainment options. Menus, even on the best of devices, can be frustrating to navigate. Fortunately, high precision hand tracking and gesture recognition offers seamless navigation on any devices with streaming services, including Nreal Light.

Virtual Experiences

Music artist Childish Gambino partnered with Google’s AR/Lens team to create PHAROS AR, a fun experience for fans across the globe to journey through the world of his latest releases. Kicking off with an AR portal, fans walked into the new digital world to explore an AR cave, interacting with hidden glyphs, additional worlds, and other visual elements. The multiplayer experience was used as an outlet for artistic expression and for fans to explore interacting with audiovisual content in a new way.

With hand tracking and gesture recognition, a high level of immersion can be achieved as natural interactions enable the audience to set aside their disbelief to participate in a new medium of entertainment.

Art & Museums

Based on breakthrough research on the way the brain perceives art, The Museum from Home AR App brings the likes of Vincent van Gogh’s Starry Night and Edvard Munch’s The Scream into your living room. We’ve all worked hard to hang paintings right in the physical world, and hand gestures for art placement would be a welcome integration. Stepping out of the museum and into your own digital sandbox, Tilt Brush by Google lets you paint in a 3D space with Virtual Reality. The ability to put down the controllers and create art with our own hands is a reality with hardware agnostic software that enables hand tracking.

Optimizing Entertainment With Gesture Controls

It would be fascinating to see what Virtual Reality artists and performers like Anna Zhilyaeva would be able to create with customized and high sequence accuracy air gestures.

In gaming, streaming, and virtual activations, we see optimized experiences for audiences across platforms with hand tracking and gesture recognition. Deeper levels of engagement, interactivity and optimized performance can be achieved to offer competitive experiences for consumers.

If you are interested to learn more about hand tracking and gesture recognition solutions for entertainment, see ClayReality.



Bringing natural interaction to the virtual and augmented world.