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Oculus ‘Considering’ Free Rifts for Schools

Oculus VR, the company behind the Oculus Rift virtual reality (VR) headset, announced its intention to start engaging with educational institutions last month. CEO Brendan Iribe revealed that the company hopes to interact with universities ‘in a big way’, though didn’t reveal many specifics on the company’s plans. This week company founder and Oculus Rift creator Palmer Luckey has suggested that those plans could involve free headsets for schools.

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Luckey revealed as much to Jason Lamb, an IT Professional at McMaster University in Canada and student at Memorial University. This week Lamb revealed an email he’d sent to Luckey via a Twitter post. The email asked if the company had any upcoming plans for ‘education initiatives’, perhaps providing development tools for teachers. He also inquired as to if the Oculus Rift itself might someday be available to educational institutions at a discount.

Luckey’s reply was also revealed, in which he answered both questions. The designer reconfirmed that the company did have plans surrounding education and would be announcing more details in the near future. He also revealed that he wasn’t sure if a ‘widespread’ discount program could happen but did state that the company is ‘considering’ issuing free Oculus Rift headsets to educational institutions, though again didn’t offer any details.

“Went to get these into the hands of as many people as possible,” Luckey wrote, “especially the people who are learning how to build the future!”

Iribe had previously suggested that some of the company’s staff will start hosting talks and workshops at universities, but this is the first we have heard of these institutions benefiting from free Oculus Rifts. Still, don’t expect too many announcements in this field while the company is still focusing on its first consumer version (CV1) and the release of its second development kit (DK2) in July 2014. VRFocus will continue to follow Oculus VR and any and all applications of the Oculus Rift, bringing you the very latest.