Many questioned Facebook’s intentions when it shelled out $2 billion to buy Oculus VR nearly a year ago. During a recent interview, the company’s chief product officer, Chris Cox, shed some light on their virtual reality ambitions outside of gaming and entertainment.
Cox said the social network is working on virtual reality apps for Facebook. He didn’t go into great detail regarding the apps but said to imagine a world where users can share their current environment in real-time instead of simply posting comments, photos or videos.
His description of Facebook VR sounds a lot like what Samsung showed off late last year. Project Beyond is a VR viewer of sorts with 16 individual HD-quality cameras arranged in a circular pattern. It captures 360-degree imagery which is then stitched together and streamed to Gear VR headsets.
Cox admitted that Facebook VR apps are still a ways away, reiterating once again that we are just at the beginning of the virtual reality era. For starters, everyone would need headsets like the Rift and a ton of bandwidth, especially if you wanted to share an experience over a cellular network.
Up to this point, we’ve only really heard Facebook and Oculus VR talk about gaming and more recently, entertainment, as it relates to virtual reality. Last month at the Sundance Film Festival in Utah, Oculus VR showed off a VR-based interactive short called Lost. According to the company, Hollywood is extremely interested in making virtual reality movies.