Most new technologies that venture from the established path run into trouble through consumer understanding and acceptance. Whether it’s Google Glass or Oculus Rift, overcoming public perception is difficult, and takes substantial effort to effect.
With the acquisition by Facebook of the Oculus Rift, the technology is finally on a path to maturity and public acceptance.
“We really do have an emerging hotbed here. I think this is the heart and soul of where virtual reality is going to be,” said said Mark Bolas, director of the Mixed Reality Lab, a collaboration facility.
This facility was where Oculus Rift founder Palmer Luckey spent a substantial amount of time prior to beginning his virtual reality endeavours.
While many may argue Oculus Rift would have faired better as an independent company, having increased funding and support will accelerate public adoption through wider availability. In addition, the support of of a massive tech giant will mean a larger range of software platforms for the Rift on public launch – with more to come.
The technology is certainly building consumer interest, and the publicity generated through large-scale dealings is only set to accelerate this. Continual publicity and consumer awareness through 2014 will likely mean the general release of the Rift is met with high adoption rates, driving development of new software.
The technology has been already met with acclaim when tested, thanks to the improvements offered over traditional displays.
“It tricks your brain and it feels like you’re somewhere you’re not. Except in real life, you’ve never gotten that sense of scale,” said Chris Dixon, a venture capital partner at Andreessen Horowitz. Mr Dixon led a funding round in December for Oculus Rift.
As virtual reality technologies continue to be developed and begin receiving a wider array of software, adoption rates could climb exponentially.