Just over 12 months ago Facebook bought Oculus VR (the company that develops 3D visors Oculus Rift) for 2 billion dollars promising a ever increasing spread of contents related to virtual reality, but to see in stores the first “retail” release of the 3D visor developed by Palmer Luckey and Brendan Iribe (which will be based on the third prototype, so far known as Crescent Bay) you will have to wait at least another 12 months, since Oculus VR itself in an preview announced that deliveries will take place as of the first quarter 2016. The waiting is justified, according to Oculus VR, by the need to provide potential consumers in addition to the 3D viewer also “compelling content, a full ecosystem, and a fully-integrated hardware/software tech stack designed specifically for virtual reality”. The problem is that between now and 12 months prospective buyers may be tempted by other competing offers, not only and not so much of Sony, which, however, with Project Morpheus is already working on its own prototype 3D viewer compatible with the Playstation 4, to match with DualShock 4 controller and PS Camera, or of Microsoft with its HoloLens, as that of Verge. The famous developer of games and virtual worlds as Dota, Dota2 and Halflife, with which in the past he has worked also the current greek Minister of Finance, Yanis Varoufakis, is itself engaged in the development of a 3D viewer, the HTC Vive, that according to the latest should be in stores in time for the Christmas season 2015, with a “market timing” faster of at least 3 months compared to that of Oculus VR and above all able to take advantage of the boost given by the Christmas sales of videogames. The real clash according to many will once again just that, already seen in many ways in Second Life and other virtual worlds: will prevail fans of videogames for PCs, desktop or laptops that are, or will be fans of augmented reality and virtual reality the typical buyers of such devices? In the first case Valve could have the opportunity to “steal the base” to Oculus and to Facebook, in the second case both Valve and Sony, as well as the same Microsoft, risk a flop in excess of that of Google Glass (that despite intensive marketing activities have never gone beyond the size of the micro niche market), giving time to Palmer Luckey and to Mark Zuckerberg to better assess their moves starting from the type of contents (recreational or other?) and their source (user-generated or professional?).
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