With the rise of virtual reality (VR) head-mounted displays (HMDs), interest in 360 degree filming is growing at a rapid rate. Today there are a number of teams that are working in this soon-to-be-big space, including the likes of cinematic VR company Jaunt and Purple Pill, which recently released its designs for a 360 degree camera rig for free. Even Gear VR mobile HMD creator Samsung has its Project Beyond. With this in mind, you might think there’s potential for Oculus VR, Samsung’s partner on Gear VR and creator of the Oculus Rift, to also make its own rig. But that isn’t the case.
Speaking to LA Times, Oculus VR founder and Oculus Rift Palmer Luckey confirmed that the company isn’t working on its own 360 degree camera. In fact, Luckey noted that it simply ‘didn’t make sense’ to get involved in an area that is largely dominated by one leading camera company, GoPro. “It doesn’t make sense for us to compete with GoPro in a market they really know and own,” he said. “The same goes for all the other camera companies working on VR.” Many 360 degree rigs already use multiple GoPro cameras, and the company itself has its own system for professionals, accommodating 16 cameras.
That doesn’t mean that Oculus VR isn’t working in VR film altogether, however. Back in January 2015 the company unveiled Oculus Story Studio, a brand new team that is devoted to CG VR filmmaking in an attempt to pave the way for future creators. Currently the company has revealed 2 projects in Lost and Henry. The latter is set to ship alongside the Oculus Rift itself in Q1 2016, and recently had a VR trailer released for it. Not only that but Oculus Story Studio also gave away the Unreal Engine 4 project with which the trailer was built so that others could get a feel for how it was put together.
VRFocus will continue to follow Oculus VR’s work in all aspects of the industry, reporting back with the latest from it.