Oculus Rift, the exciting new technology that invites consumers to strap a pair of VR goggles on to their faces and step inside a virtual playground, will soon make the transition to mobiles. Billed as a low-cost VR machine for the everyday consumer, Rift is the talk of the town in tech circles and has built a massive following on YouTube, where prominent broadcasters regularly strap themselves into headsets before scaring themselves silly playing horror games. The resulting videos regularly top YouTube’s most watched lists, and have helped put Oculus on everybody’s lips.
Earlier this year, the nascent tech was been co-opted by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, who is now working alongside original inventor Palmer Luckey to produce a commercial version of Oculus. As part of their efforts, they are working hand in hand with mobile-experts Samsung to bring the virtual reality industry to tablets and smartphones. After all, why should desktops have all the fun?
“We’ve been working on the mobile SDK for over a year in collaboration with Samsung, optimising the Note 4 tech stack to deliver the first ultra-low latency, mobile virtual reality headset,” said Oculus.
Dubbed Gear VR, app development companies are being invited to download Samsung’s official Mobile Software Development Kit and start putting the tech through its paces. Developers can access a robust suite of services, including a host of exciting-sounding features supported by Oculus’ mobile SDK, such as real-time CPU threading, real-time GPU context switching, GPU context priorities, the ability to lock clock frequency, direct front buffer rendering, asynchronous time warp, and direct warped content.
If that wasn’t enough, the SDK also boasts access to 360 videos and photos, as well as Oculus Cinema, all of which come complete with the full source code. Evidently, Oculus and Samsung have left no stone unturned and are serious about getting mobile app developers on-board.
Like a lot of new technology, Oculus will live or die depending on the number of unique, noteworthy apps available to download on day one, so it’s no surprise they are chasing devs and giving them the tools to create content ahead of the launch. We’ll see just what they have up their sleeves when Oculus goes on sale next year.