Facebook may have bought Oculus Rift, but now Google is splashing out virtual reality technology too.
The search giant is leading a $542m investment in Magic Leap, which claims to have invented a realistic version of virtual and augmented reality, dubbed 'cinematic reality'.
The Florida-based firm's website features a little elephant moving around realistically in a person's hands, to show off their capabilities.
Magic Leap said it raised $542 million in a funding round led by Google Inc.
Little is known about Magic Leap's product, but founder and CEO Rony Abovitz said in February that his company's mission was to 'develop and commercialize.. the most natural and human-friendly wearable computing interface in the world.'
Investors in the latest round included Qualcomm Inc , the world's No.1 mobile phone chipmaker, Andreessen Horowitz, KKR and Legendary Entertainment.
EXTREME IMMERSION COULD BE SO REALISTIC IT COULD TRIGGER HEART ATTACKS, EXPERT WARNS
An expert has claimed that ultra-realistic games played using virtual reality headsets could kill people.
Denny Unger believes that the technology is so immersive that the first incidence of someone being scared to death, is not far away.
Mr Unger, creative director at Cloudhead Games warned a virtual reality panel in Seattle that 'we're very close to having the first death in VR',Gizmodo reported.
He said:'When the commercial version comes out, somebody is going to scare somebody to death - somebody with a heart condition or something like that. It is going to happen. Absolutely.'
Many realistic video games played on standard consoles make players feel tense and villains often jump out and 'attack' gamers.
But this effect could be intensified hugely when virtual reality headsets become widely available.
Very few details about the technology have been revealed, aside from saying it offers a more realistic experience than Oculus Rift.
Mr Abovitz told The South Florida Business Journal that virtual reality and augmented reality are old terms, with a largely disappointing history.
'We have the term 'cinematic reality' because we are disassociated with those things. … When you see this, you will see that this is computing for the next 30 or 40 years.
'To go farther and deeper than we're going, you would be changing what it means to be human.'
It is likely that the device will show wearers hi-resolution images close to their face, by projecting pictures onto the eye. Viewers will probably see different angles and depths when they adjust their focus.
This would be beneficial because Magic Leap could mix virtual reality images with the real world.
While it is not clear what form the technology takes, Mr Abovitz has previously said that he hopes it could one day be built into a pair of glasses, in which case, Google may aim on incorporating 'cinematic reality' into future iterations of Google Glass