Facebook Goes Virtual Reality

April 2, 2014

Facebook has bought virtual reality headset maker, Oculus. Pat Pilcher tells the story.

PvX6Bunhq-60KpcDztxKTcLLx9EHAVING RECENTLY TESTED Oculus’ virtual reality headset, I’m not too surprised that Facebook has bought the company, or about the money they spent: US$2 billion.

Stereoscopic 3D images and head-tracking combine on the headset to make for an immersive experience – an experience that has so far resulted in over 75,000 orders for its headset development kits.

The acquisition of Oculus, plus Sony’s recent demonstration of the prototype Morpheus headset, are a solid shot in the arm for virtual reality.

VR technologies had long languished since the 1990s, when their popularity spiked thanks to movies such as Lawnmower Man and books by sci-fi writer William Gibson.

Speculation is likely to mount over the following months on just what Facebook’s plans are for the headset maker. They have indicated plans to extend Oculus’s reach into communications media, entertainment and education.

Based on statements by Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, we can assume that VR is also a contender for next-gen social networking platforms.

“Mobile is the platform of today, and now we’re also getting ready for the platforms of tomorrow,” said Zuckerberg. “Oculus has the chance to create the most social platform ever, and change the way we work, play and communicate.” PAT PILCHER

Pat has been talking about tech on TV, radio and print for over 20 years, having served time as a TV tech guy and currently penning reviews for Witchdoctor. He loves nothing more than rolling his sleeves up and playing with shiny gadgets.

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