New York Times reports Facebook will put its logo and UI on Oculus Rift hardware [Update]

Tuesday's surprise announcement that Facebook will be buying the Oculus VR company for $2 billion in cash and stock continues to generate online debate over the reasons why a social networking company is buying a PC gaming hardware business. Now a new report from no less than the New York Times claims Facebook has plans to put its own stamp on the Oculus Rift helmet, literally.

Could we see a VR helmet with the Facebook logo in the future?

The story cites an unnamed source which claims Facebook eventually will redesign the Oculus Rift and put its own logo on the hardware, along with its custom user interface. In Tuesday's conference call with Facebook execs after the buyout announcement, it was strongly hinted that the company thinks the hardware could be used for social networking by interacting with full 3D avatars while wearing the Oculus Rift helmet.

Facebook has had a rather poor track record so far in terms of incorporating its brand and features in hardware products. In 2011, the HTC Status smartphone, which had a physical button that could automatically update a person's Facebook account, was a critical and sales failure. More recently, the HTC First, which incorporated the Facebook Home UI out of the box, was also a sales disappointment when it was released in 2013.

However, both Facebook and Oculus VR feel this collaboration will be different and will help to accelerate virtual reality to be accepted and used by the general public. Oculus VR co-founder  Palmer Luckey is quoted in the NYT article as saying, ""This is the best shot virtual reality has ever had and probably will ever have."

Update: According to a statement sent to Re/code by Facebook, the company now says it has no such plans to put its logo on the Oculus Rift device, nor does it plan to put in its own design or UI changes.

Source: New York Times | Image via Oculus VR

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It's amazing how tech tried in the past is being re-tried again (mind you a bit differently).

Here's information for the old VRML97, and later X3D web page coding and standards
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/VRML
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/X3D

(All pre second life)

If you want to give it a spin, with plugin for modern web browser support.
http://www.cortona3d.com/cortona3d-viewers

And site with vrml demo's
http://cs.iupui.edu/~aharris/webDesign/vrml/

Edited by Jason Stillion, Mar 27 2014, 4:09pm :

I'm just pretty tired of games trying to incorporate social media in general, and this doesn't seem to be a very good step. The fact that Zuckerberg sees a VR unit as a social media device... what? That is nothing near its intended purpose. Not even remotely.

As I wrote in another thread elsewhere: Watch this space. Oculus Rift apps will now require you to login with your Facebook profile.

I was never been fan of Oculus rift anyway. I couldn't care less. this thing gives you motion sickness backed by researches. that is not fun. it is both stupid and claustrophobic to be blindfolded while playing games. I was really looking fw to illumiroom but they don't talk about it anymore.

just when they finally get a VR device that actually works the way it's supposed to, it STILL gets ruined. we're never gonna have VR technology -_-

Why? As if Oculus is the only one working on this. Valve's VR tech is reportedly much better according to those who have tried both.

Cosmocronos said,
Now I am just waiting for FB announcing a new OS.....

an OS that is all about sharing. and liking. and tracking. see; you could see your friends installing software and whatever they do in their PC.

But, but Facebook wasn't going to interfere at all at just bought the company because they thought it was really cool tech and wanted it to succeed!

Yeah, right.

Is it only me or has everyone lost their minds? Why is this anything to be so excited about? Why would I wear something so ridiculous just to play a game I'd much rather play on my console and TV? Unless this things comes packed with a chinese massage I'll definitely skip it.

This is nothing new. VR has never worked in the past and it never will in that form factor.

I tried out one of the original Rift units. The resolution was pretty low (640x480 or so) and quite pixellated (and the pixels are quite big too). I wear glasses so I tried a couple of the different lenses that came with it to try to use it with or without wearing them. It was a cool feeling even at that early stage (tried some rollercoaster demo) but I don't think I could play a game for extended periods of time with it. Just a few minutes of the rollercoaster demo and my head was spinning.

it was strongly hinted that the company thinks the hardware could be used for social networking by interacting with full 3D avatars while wearing the Oculus Rift helmet.
Second Life comes to mind...

Yes. hell yes. FB logos everywhere. on your walls, in your hair! man FB should buy a Persian rug company here in Iran so we could have rugs with facebook logos at the center... MMMHMMM (lol)

FB buy hardware company, that is very weird.
what worse?

oculus rift will be: FaceRift.

"dude, last night me and a friend were totally facerifting each other, yeah, we played poker, i swear i saw some cards in his pocket."

just trying laugh off these news....

That money will be spent on getting thinner, higher dpi screens, better head tracking etc etc

Hopefully good things will come of this......however, all im interested in is a VR racing game :-)

glen8 said,
That money will be spent on getting thinner, higher dpi screens, better head tracking etc etc

Hopefully good things will come of this......however, all im interested in is a VR racing game :-)


Have you ever used the Facebook UI? Do you want that right up in your face?

glen8 said,

Hopefully good things will come of this......however, all im interested in is a VR racing game :-)

I heard Sega as already made a VR game for this new VR set... it's called Virtua Racing :D :D :D

Facebook shouldn't overspent all of the acquisition and now i'm afraid the team isn't gonna work on harder due to massive amount of money they get to spend.

I was getting interested with this device and SONY's and MS VR hardware, but not, im only looking forward to Sony and MS VR hardware, don't really want to play "Farmville" on the rift, don't know why MS didn't pick it up ...

EvilAstroboy said,
I was getting interested with this device and SONY's and MS VR hardware, but not, im only looking forward to Sony and MS VR hardware, don't really want to play "Farmville" on the rift, don't know why MS didn't pick it up ...

has to start somewhere

Well, since MS is kinda tied w/ FB, seems the FB Oculus will be exclusive on Xbox, while Sony has their own Proprietary VR.

Kind of a shame, b/c before this purchase, it seemed like Oculus was going to become an industry standard across different devices. Support for it was being built in all the major game engines.