Arguably the defining moment of virtual reality’s (VR) short history since its revival was the purchase of Oculus VR by social networking giant Facebook. CEO Mark Zuckerberg made the decision to acquire the VR specialists for some $2 billion USD. As a result, Oculus VR launched a massive hiring campaign, greatly expanding its team, and has even featured at recent events such as Facebook’s F8 developer event. But just what is Zuckerberg’s vision for Oculus VR and the Oculus Rift?
That’s a question one Facebook user put towards the CEO during a recent Q&A session on the site itself.
“Our mission to give people the power to experience anything,” Zuckerberg replied. “Even if you don’t have the ability to travel somewhere, or to be with someone in person, or even if something is physically impossible to build in our analog world, the goal is to help build a medium that will give you the ability to do all of these things you might not otherwise be able to do. This will be incredibly powerful as a communication medium as well. Just like we capture photos and videos today and then share them on the internet to let others experience them too, we’ll be able to capture whole 3D scenes and create new environments and then share those with people as well. It will be pretty wild.”
Back at F8, Zuckerberg revealed plans to bring spherical photos and videos to Facebook with support for the Oculus Rift. This will allow users to upload 360 degree content and then have friends put on the head-mounted display (HMD) and feel as if they’re a part of the scene, using the device’s head-tracking technology to have free control over where they look. Zuckerberg didn’t state when this feature would arrive but it appears to be the first instance of the company directly using the Oculus Rift.
VRFocus will continue to follow Facebook’s work with the Oculus Rift, reporting back with the latest updates on the device and the company.