As the Facebook-owned Oculus ships the consumer edition of the Rift, its virtual reality (VR) headset, is Facebook readying plans to dive into augmented reality (AR) next? At the F8 developer conference, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg laid down a 10-year road map, which included VR/AR.
After discussing the success of the Oculus Rift and the Samsung Gear VR, which Oculus developed, the focus of Zuckerberg's speech switched to AR, Re/code reports.
Zuckerberg, with an image of a simple pair of glasses behind him, spoke of the potential of AR and how in the future, instead of showing off family photos on a smartphone, users can unfurl a giant virtual screen.
"When we get to this world, a lot of the things we think about today as physical objects, like a TV, will be $1 apps in an AR app store," he said. "It's going to take a long time. But that's our vision."
While Facebook's AR plans are still in the pipeline, Facebook's emphasis on video is seeing more material developments. The company recently added a live streaming feature to its smartphone app and at the conference, the company also pulled the wraps off its first 360 degree camera.
The 17-lens Facebook Surround 360 camera also shoots in 3D and with it Facebook intends to fill a gap in the ecosystem. Facebook believes that it was difficult to find a 3D-360 degree camera that could be mounted to a standard tripod, shoot video and have the video edited in a seamless manner. The ones that did manage to do all the above were proprietary technology and as a result, getting the community to adopt it was next to impossible.
Facebook decided to go about changing this scenario by not only developing a camera that checks all the boxes, but in an effort to get the everyday user to start shooting, made the whole thing open-source.
From stitching the stereoscopic video to machining the aluminium chassis, everything is open-source and accessible to the public and users are free to build their own Surround 360 and start shooting.