Facebook has announced that it is buying Oculus VR, virtual reality company, for $2 billion. It does not mean Oculus Rift will lose its focus on gaming.
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The world was surprised yesterday when Facebook announced it’s buying Oculus VR. The deal means $400 million in cash payouts and the rest will be paid in Facebook shares, a lot of them. The plan was revealed yesterday, though it should be finalized in Q2 2014. With so many negative response, we have to wonder why this could be a bad thing for Oculus Rift.
Facebook is well established, the most popular social network for some years now, whether we like it or not. Most Internet users visit Facebook on daily basis for one reason or another, and some even play social games while there. Zynga has opened the door for social gaming on Facebook several years ago, and since then we have seen numerous developers earning big profit in that same genre. You might think that something like FarmVille 3D would be lame, but the fact is that the current version of this social game still has more than 3.5 million daily users. Not to mention Candy Crush Saga with its 100 million+ monthly users.
Then there is Tencent, a Chinese company that has more sales than Facebook. To stay competitive Zuckerberg and the team have to explore new ways of getting users to like their products. Tencent is slowly spreading through Western world, but it won’t be long before we start using this new social platform and everything it has to offer. The company has recently acquired WhatsApp, the popular messaging service. Facebook has many reasons to look forward to the deal with Oculus VR, and here are some good things Oculus will get from it.
The co-founder of Oculus, Palmer Luckey, went on Reddit to explain why they went to join such large company, which seems to be disliked by many. “The partnership accelerates our vision, allows us to execute on some of our most creative ideas and take risks that were otherwise impossible. Most importantly, it means a better Oculus Rift with fewer compromises even faster than we anticipated.” Luckey said. More funds means faster and better, research and development. Isn’t this what we want? To get Oculus Rift as soon as possible. They have raised a huge amount through crowdfunding, but developing new technologies is costly.
When Oculus Rift was first announced, it was huge, though Sony’s Project Morpheus entered the race. Sony has more funds to develop VR faster and its headset already looks better than Oculus. It is a race, and to stay in it you have to have enough money for improvements. With Facebook shares, the company will have more than enough money to continue the development of a revolutionary virtual reality platform.
Mixed reactions from game developers and gamers are understandable, though we should all look at a bigger picture. Oculus VR has announced the Dev kit 2 version of the Rift headset few days ago, which is complete with high definition displays and improved head-tracking hardware. More working capital that they will get from Facebook can only make the virtual reality headset better.
Dolores is SEO and Digital Marketing consultant who has been completely hog-washed into doing this site by KC.