The Oculus Connect event at the end of the week is keeping most of us on the edge of our seats, waiting to see what the giant tech company has in store for us. This event has been dubbed as “the start of the next chapter in AR and VR”, so it has generated some real buzz. With that being said, there needs to be a level of caution that fans are operating with when this event starts on Thursday. Here is why.
The start of a chapter means the ending of another. The Oculus Rift S and Quest were fantastic, but everyone knows that they could’ve been better. The only reason they weren’t is because the demand for a much better headset is so low. Common consumers were completely fine with the hardware that Oculus provided us with this last spring. That is usually the blueprint VR companies work with, as they don’t want to be the ones to set the market, as it can be hard to know what customers will actually buy into. The same can be said about AR.
Many are expecting this AR release to be out of this world. In fact, we expect it to be very much inside of this world. Whether Oculus releases AR software for the VR headset, or they release an AR headset, we expect the functionality to be average, and the push for adoption high. This means they can expect the hardware to look amazing, but the software to be very minimal and skeleton feeling.
This isn’t because the technology isn’t there for Oculus to blow everyone else out of the water, but because this is just the start of the chapter. There is no huge market for augmented reality right now in the consumer market, so anything they release that is user friendly and looks good will likely have high adoption. This AR device (whether they release it or not) will be the frameworks of AR and not the whole pie. We are expecting this to be similar to the first Oculus Event when they gave the community a framework of virtual reality. Now, we will be seeing this same thing with AR. Below we will be included just how simple this release could be by including the dev notes of the very first Oculus Event.
“We’re really excited to introduce a new feature prototype, Crescent Bay.
Crescent Bay is the latest prototype headset on the path to the consumer version of the Rift. Crescent Bay features new display technology, 360° head tracking, expanded positional tracking volume, dramatically improved weight and ergonomics, and high-quality integrated audio.
These enhancements allow for a level of presence that’s impossible to achieve with DK2. If you’re here at Oculus Connect, you’ll be able to try Crescent Bay today.
Along with the new hardware, we’ve created original demo content, which we’re calling the “Crescent Bay Experiences,” developed in-house by our content team specifically for Oculus Connect.
The Oculus Content team in Seattle, not shown: Seneca, Tom, Kenneth, and Tyler.
The demo is designed to demonstrate the power of presence and give you a glimpse into the level of VR experience you can expect to see come to life in gaming, film, and beyond.
This is still incredibly early hardware. There are plenty of technical challenges left to solve for the consumer Rift, but Crescent Bay is truly the best virtual reality headset we’ve ever built.”
This wasn’t even a release, it was just a prototype announcement. Now that Oculus has more developers and manufactures than before, we could expect a real release, but keep your hopes low as this could be just a hint at what the years to come will be holding.