F8 2017: Facebook Might Tease VR/AR Offerings

F8 2017: Facebook Might Tease VR/AR Offerings

Facebook is getting increasingly involved in hardware. The company already owns Oculus — one of the major virtual reality (VR) headset manufacturers in the world.

 

Facebook launched its hardware-focused division, Building 8 in April 2016. The company might showcase the hardware that it has been developing over the past year in Building 8 at its annual developer conference the F8, Business Insider reported Sunday. According to the report, the company has been working on projects related to VR and augmented reality technology, brain-scanning technology and camera technology.

 

This year’s F8 could see Facebook come out with a slew of devices, which could all tie up with its social network. While the company has not commented on Building 8, it’s hiring in the past year has hinted toward its projects.

 

The report adds that Facebook has hired a former John Hopkins neuroscientist to develop a mind-controlled prosthetic arm along with an interventional cardiologist from Stanford with experience in medical device development.

 

But, the company’s biggest hire is Regina Dugan, a former Google advanced technology head, who previously worked on projects such as Ara and Tango. She currently oversees Building 8 projects and has indicated via her Facebook posts in the past year that the company could be working on technology, which makes better use of Facebook’s social network.

 

Going by Dugan’s posts, the probability is that Facebook could be working on advanced stage VR, which could provide you the feel of interacting with people real-time while using supportive hardware developed by Building 8. This also goes in sync with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s 10-year roadmap announced at the 2016 F8 conference in which he stated that the company would be working on “creating better connectivity.”

 

Social networks venturing into hardware is not new. Facebook's competitor Snap already sells its AR Goggles — the Snapchat Spectacles and is rumored to be working on a camera-focussed drone. 

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