But the hype has fizzled out. The first generation of most VR hardware, including Facebook’s Oculus Rift, was expensive. Almost all headsets required users to be logged into a personal computer. There were no obvious “killer apps” to attract people to the devices. Worse yet, some people have had nausea after using the products.
The next generation of VR headsets are focused on reducing costs. Samsung’s Gear VR, Google Cardboard, and Google Daydream have all asked consumers to put on goggles and put their smartphones down for use as VR displays. These efforts also failed, as smartphones weren’t powerful enough to deliver an immersive virtual reality experience.
“People would always ask me, ‘Which VR headset should I buy? ”Said Nick Fajt, Managing Director of Rec Room, a popular video game among VR enthusiasts. “And I always said, ‘Just wait.’ “
To adapt, some companies have started offering virtual reality not for the masses but for narrower areas. Magic Leap, a startup that touted itself as the next big innovation in augmented reality computing, has moved on to selling virtual reality devices to businesses. Microsoft went in a similar direction, with a particular focus on military contracts, although it said it was “absolutely” still working toward a mainstream consumer product.
In 2017, even Mr. Zuckerberg acknowledged in a call for results that Facebook’s bet on Oculus was “taking a little longer” than it initially thought.
Facebook devoted the following years to research and development to eliminate the need for a captive cable connecting the VR headset to the PC, thus freeing up the user’s freedom of movement while keeping the device powerful enough to deliver a feel. virtual immersion.
He also worked on “indoor tracking,” a way to monitor the position of a VR headset in relation to its surroundings, writing new algorithms that are more energy efficient and don’t consume a device’s battery too quickly.