In an interview following the company's recent announcement of $75 million in new funding
, Oculus CEO Brendan Iribe has shared some more info about the team's plans as they work toward an expected consumer-ready model of the Rift head-mounted VR display in 2014.
Speaking with Venturebeat
, Iribe hits a lot of topics, touching on:
- The improved comfort of the latest Rift prototypes with significantly reduced latency:
When you put it on — the latest internal prototype, which is what Marc Andreessen and his team saw – it’s a completely different experience from the previous versions. The latest one finally ties it all together. There’s this switch in your head. Your brain, instead of feeling like you’re looking through a VR headset, suddenly feels like you’re just looking through a pair of glasses into another reality. It’s much more comfortable.
We got our developer kits — the prototype that you saw way back when, at the last CES — running at about 60 to 70 milliseconds. Our most recent internal prototype is now between 10 and 20 milliseconds. Less than 20 [milliseconds] flips the switch and you cross that threshold where the brain feels comfortable with it. You’re not reminded you’re looking at a computer device.
- The team's confidence in impacting the future of games:
Virtual reality — and Oculus, now, because there’s nothing else like it — is what the next generation is going to be all about. When we look back on 2013, 2014, the next two to three years, I’m confident that people will remember that the big change was Oculus. There may be a few more that launch and compete, which should be exciting. Hopefully they do as well or better as we do.
We’re finally going to be free of the 2D monitor. It’s been a window into virtual reality that we’ve all looked into for 30 or 40 years. We’ll have goggles at the beginning. Down the road, a decade or so from now, you’ll get a nice pair of sunglasses and look out into virtual reality. There’s a lot of opportunity beyond gaming as far as where this will go.
I’m bullish that VR is going to reignite the PC race and the GPU/CPU race, which has largely plateaued. People aren’t talking about gigahertz or cores anymore. They aren’t talking about one GPU compared to the next, how many triangles they can do. It’s calmed down. With VR, though, when you put on the headset and it all comes together and works well, you want more. You want higher-resolution environments, even if you’re already running on a high-end computer. We expect to see a huge jump over the next decade in computing performance.
- John Carmack championing the mobile device functionality efforts:
At this point there’s more than 50 of us in the company, and the majority of us are engineers. We have a team of real senior, rock star engineers. Of course, Carmack is at the top. He’s been spearheading a lot of the mobile effort, working with a group of talented engineers on that. He largely works out of the Dallas office. Most of the engineers, though, are in Irvine here, working remotely with John. There’s a handful of other developers in Dallas that John is working with.
It’s spread out. We can do a lot of this stuff remotely. So far, so good. John is known for being head-down. We’re trying to respect his wishes, where he wants to get in and code and solve these problems on such a small platform. To do that well, he needs to focus and have his isolation. That’s what he’s doing.
- Welcoming competition in the VR space:
There will be a handful of big companies, we hope, that get into this. We hope their technology pushes the ball forward. Competition makes for better products for the consumer, usually. As long as nobody does anything too crazy and everyone just tries to deliver the best product possible, it’s going to be a lot of fun to see what other companies come up with.
There's quite a bit more juice in the full interview
, so it's recommended reading for anyone eager or curious about the future prospects of virtual reality.
Iribe finishes the interview with a hint that the latest Rift prototypes might be on show at CES 2014, the upcoming annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas from January 8th.
Posted 02:14pm 17/12/13
Posted 02:33pm 17/12/13
Capitalisation of words in titles is a question of style rather than a hard rule. The general consensus is that it should be consistent, and it looks like AGN have a consistent first-and-last, nouns and verbs style (see their news page).
See also http://english.stackexchange.com/questions/14/whic
Posted 08:47am 18/12/13
Posted 09:29pm 18/12/13
Anyhow, fantastic news seeing an actual time frame of some sort placed on the retail version going to market. Awesome :)
Posted 11:14pm 18/12/13
Posted 11:47pm 18/12/13
You can fit slimmer frame glasses on ok while wearing the current devkit, but it's not the most comfortable/ideal experience, as the more snug you can get the whole assembly to fit your face, the better the immersion is. If you're the only one using a particular headset, you could just pop some lenses out of a cheap pair of your prescription glasses and mount them in front of the standard lenses inside the rift.
That's basically all the different solutions for the optically challenged. What would be awesome is if they could somehow code the vision correction into the barrel distortion applied by the software, but I'm not sure if it works like that.
Posted 02:13am 19/12/13
Whoop, I think they're planning on allowing a bunch more options for glasses-wearing folk in the commercial release.
Pretty sure they said that they will also have a wide range of lenses that you can mix and match for glasses. I think there was also meant to be more clearance for glasses as well.