When it comes to predicting where the future of virtual reality (VR) will head various industry professionals have their own assumptions. Over the pas few years consumer VR has enjoyed rapid growth, with software developers and hardware manufacturers jumping on board so as not to get left behind. But VR currently has two distinct areas, the lower end mobile side currently dominated by Samsung’s Gear VR and the all purpose Google Cardboard, then the high end which has Oculus Rift, HTC Vive and the upcoming PlayStation VR. One man well positioned to see what the future may hold is Epic Games’ co-founder Tim Sweeney who ultimately sees mobile as the end game.
Asked about mobile VR being the future in an interview with VR Intelligence Sweeney said: “There’s no question in my mind that the billion user version of this hardware is going to be a mobile form factor, but that’s a decade out.
“What can mobile VR look like when you have 20 Teraflops in your pocket? When you have something that looks like Oakley sunglasses on your head, with a completely immersive combination of computer imagery and the real world combined seamlessly? That’s the long term.”
Sweeney does see an eventual coming together of both sides of VR, just don’t expect it too soon. “I think the merge point is 10 to 12 years out,” he said. “It will definitely exist, just because the mobile hardware is getting faster and faster. The other thing to consider is that your eyes have a finite amount of bandwidth. That’s the funny realisation with computer graphics – there is an amount of computing power that is enough.
“Desktop PCs are approaching that point today, and mobile will approach that point somewhere in the future. I think mobile will ultimately be the solution.”
Epic Games has been an avid supporter of VR from the outset. Whether though technical demonstrations like Showdown or Bullet Train, or via its videogame development software Unreal Engine. A large portion of VR titles released or being created have used the software, and Epic Games went even further by introducing its own VR Editor, enabling studios to make their projects directly in VR.
As VR continues to grow and develop VRFocus will be there to bring you all the latest announcements.