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Submitted by URNightmare 173d ago | opinion piece

Is Facebook buying Oculus a boost for Morpheus?

Last week, as Sony squared up to Oculus across the GDC conference schedule, it looked like we were set for a real David and Goliath battle over the future of VR. Plucky little Oculus, give its first breath of life on Kickstarter before earning a hefty wedge from Silicon Valley venture capitalist extraordinaire Andreessen Horowitz, rekindled the VR dream; now it was to be joined in the race by resurgent behemoth Sony. Oculus had first-mover advantage, remarkable technology and John Carmack. Sony, for all its recent troubles, remains perhaps the finest manufacturer of high- quality consumer hardware on earth (second to Apple, perhaps, but with a far broader scope of operations). (Dev, Facebook, Industry, Next-Gen, Oculus Rift, Project Morpheus, PS4, Sony, Tech)

mewhy32  +   174d ago
I feel that it is. Oculus is now going to religated to social games, farming sims, and things of that nature. Carmack is going to be making virtual livestock now. He should have stayed at Id.
jujubee88  +   173d ago
lol, no way Carmack is doing that. Would be funny though!
ArbitorChief  +   173d ago
If you honestly believe Facebook are going to turn Oculus Rift into a casual/social/mobile gaming platform, you're delusional.
#1.2 (Edited 173d ago ) | Agree(6) | Disagree(11) | Report | Reply
sinspirit  +   173d ago
I don't mind that Facebook buys it, but I do mind if they raise the price tag higher because of their brand, or that they make it cost more to develop for and abandon the ease of use it was to implement it. Add more functionality to it, I don't care, but restrict it or force people to use these new functions and you'll be driving it down. Better not see things like Facebook and Youtube in how they change the UI every month or two and don't allow choice in it.
medman  +   172d ago
I know one thing for certain....be prepared to have your eyes bombarded by advertisements when using that oculus soon to be rebranded facebook vr headset.
Battlefieldlover  +   173d ago
Mark Zuckerberg envisions people visiting virtual worlds where they can buy goods and are served advertisements...Literally his own quote.

Anyone who thinks OR vision isn't in serious trouble is delusional.
porkChop  +   173d ago
That's what I don't understand. Palmer Luckey says that the vision for Oculus hasn't changed, but reading what Zuckerberg says, he has a COMPLETELY different vision for Oculus and it's all based around making money on ads. Yet people STILL say that ads won't come to the Rift, and that FB won't affect the Rift in any way.
starchild  +   172d ago
"...he has a COMPLETELY different vision for Oculus and it's all based around making money on ads."

This is simply a lie. You guys aren't even paying attention or trying to be fair.

Here is what Zuckerberg ACTUALLY said in the shareholders conference call:

"Oculus's mission is to enable you to experience the impossible. Their technology opens up the possibility of completely new kinds of experiences. Immersive gaming is the first big opportunity. And Oculus already has big plans here that won't be changing.

The beta version of the Rift is highly anticipated by the gaming community and Oculus has already received orders for more than 75,000 development kits...which is pretty crazy by itself. These developers are mostly gamers, so this is a strong signal of how much people want to develop games for Oculus and how excited they are about it as a gaming platform.

We're going to focus on helping Oculus build out their product and develop partnerships to support more games and accelerate their plans. And they'll continue to operate independently within Facebook to do this."

Then he goes on to explain that the possibilities don't end there and mentions things like virtual tourism and possibilities for new kinds of virtual social interactions.

There is nothing wrong with this. Facebook will likely develop new VR social applications and have some advertising in them, but this will be many years down the road and VR gaming will have long since been established.

You don't seriously believe that they are going to have a well-established successful VR gaming device and just drop gaming and force everybody to suddenly use their headsets only to interact in VR social spaces do you?

By then there will be other competing VR devices and Facebook and Oculus will be doing everything they can to hold on to their place at the forefront of VR. They aren't going to just throw that all away to try to force people to use it only for social interaction.

So, no, porkChop, I haven't heard anybody say there will be no ads in VR ever. What people have said is:

1. The ads won't be popping up in our games and movies, only in future VR social apps, which is exactly what Zuckerberg stated.

2. There is no contradiction between what Zuckerberg said and what Palmer Luckey said. Luckey is saying there will be no adds popping up in our games, Zuckerberg is saying that there may be adds in a future VR social network. Completely different things.
Battlefieldlover  +   172d ago
Oh please starchild that IS what he said, you act like Facebook and zuckerberg don't have a track record. The writing is on the wall. You want to ignore it by all means go right on ahead.

Think before you call someone a liar.

Edit:

"Facebook does not yet have a business model for Oculus, but revenues won’t center around selling Oculus Rift headsets. Zuckerberg said he could envision people visiting virtual worlds where they can buy goods and are served advertisements".

http://time.com/37842/faceb...
#1.3.3 (Edited 172d ago ) | Agree(1) | Disagree(3) | Report
JBSleek  +   173d ago
Considering both options aren't muliplatform I don't see either being a hit until a competitor makes one for all.
thorstein  +   173d ago
I'm pretty sure Morpheus is both PS4 and PC compatible.
porkChop  +   173d ago
Right now Morpheus is PS4-only, but Sony has said they are considering bringing it to other platforms. And honestly it would make the most sense. In order for VR to really take off it needs to be multiplatform. On top of that, Morpheus would be a great benefit to PC gamers as it has its own processors that do all the work on its own. It wouldn't give the huge performance drop that Oculus gives. Many PC gamers would be very interested in that.
Battlefieldlover  +   173d ago
I agree, I think it will be PC compatible sooner then later in its life cycle.
Ultr  +   173d ago
Yeah I can see it having PSNow installed, so it doesn't matter if you don't have a console at all :)
starchild  +   172d ago
@porkChop

You are so grossly misinformed. The external processing unit box on Sony's headset is used to un-distort the game geometry to be split off and displayed on an external display for spectators.

It also does simple frame interpolation (like the True motion features on HDTVs) and also some audio processing.

It does not create true extra frames out of nowhere. You still need to be able to render 60 unique frame per second. All they are using it for is to create duplicates of each frame to output at 120fps to try to make up for the slower pixel response of LCD panels (which is the display type they are using).

An OLED display that refreshes at 60Hz (or better yet, 90Hz or 120Hz) wouldn't need this. Frame interpolation looks unnatural anyway and introduces artifacts. Not to mention it is extremely easy to do and doesn't require much processing at all.

"it has its own processors that do all the work on its own", you claim. But you really have no idea what you are talking about. This wouldn't help PCs in any real way. GPUs and other core hardware parts still do 99% of the lifting.
Perez  +   173d ago
being a gamer I am far more inclined towards Morpheus now that Rift is FB owned but I was really more Sony then Rift even before. If you get down to brass tacks I cant really trust FB not to do something I disagree with and as everyone said voting with your wallet is the best way these days.
Si-Fly  +   173d ago
Apart from VR is going to look like crap on a PS4 in comparison to VR on a PC with a Rift.
porkChop  +   173d ago
How? Morpheus has its own built-in hardware that handles all the extra processing. It does not have the huge performance drop that the Oculus Rift does.
Si-Fly  +   173d ago
Presumably you're talking about the FRC Processing unit in the headset? The one that doubles the frames from 60 to 120fps? And now tell me how many games so far on the PS4 have hit 60fps? Don't expect VR PS4 games to look as good as non VR PS4 games, reaching that 60fps is going to cause compromises ...
porkChop  +   173d ago
No. It has its own processors (rumored to have 3), its own GPU, etc. It handles a lot of the extra work like lens warping, etc, to create the VR. It takes much of the extra stress away from the console allowing the PS4 to mostly focus on running the game itself.
TheTowelBoy  +   173d ago
It is for gamers who prefer Sony's platforms and distrust Facebook :P but as for actual real world, no preference at all to either, circumstance I'd say that it does indeed give quite the boost to Oculus. It's easy to get on hate trains these days. But I mean really, how many people have a facebook? A TON OF PEOPLE. Now that might mean nothing to gamers, but to potential investors it means when the OR actually becomes available to the public these guys will have a forum for free advertising. To a lot of people. Thats not even considering thé 2 billion theyll get, which will pretty much make everything easier for them. The only thing I'm concerned about is the rebranding. Facebook went in knowing these guys had a vision, it's THAT vision they bought into, not their own. It just seems like the Oculus team will have an easier time because of this. Now as for the backers.. I can understand their frustration, I would be if I had backed this. Unfortunately the only money I'm giving them is when it goes public. I wish I had backed it though. Anyway I'm still excited, but cautiously so. Just everyone should be when stuff like this happens.
djplonker  +   173d ago
Just like myspace and bebo facebook is a fad that will no doubt get replaced somewhere down the line... maybe O.o
The Great Melon  +   173d ago
I would disagree with that. Facebook has managed to grow so large that it has practically ingrained itself as an institution for communication on the internet. Half the websites you look at have Facebook logins integrated into them. There will doubtlessly be a new 'thing' that emerges to waste time on, but Facebook won't fade away because of that. Something like reddit might be more likely to fade away in my opinion in favor of something new.
v6volume  +   173d ago
YES
dcj0524  +   173d ago
Yes for sure. VR is more popular than ever now because of this news so now both Morpheus and Oculus Rift have a popularity boost.
_LarZen_  +   173d ago
"Is Facebook buying Oculus a boost for Morpheus?"

I don't think so. Especially since Morpheus is a PS4 only device.
Nik_P757  +   172d ago
Facebook as a company bought the device as an investment. If they feel changing the vision will be a better investment for them it will happen. We should wait and see what happens before assuming the worst though. It does make Sony look better to some people considering they know the only focus of Morpheus is games, games and games. Sony has been on this gamers and developers first kick for a few years now and people notice.

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