Yesterday something happened that might surprise some of you, Facebook purchased the virtual reality company Oculus for $2 billion. The reason this is so strange is because we actually had our money on Microsoft purchasing the company, and would have never guessed that a social network would by it instead.
Despite this, Facebook says that it will be able to include the Oculus Rift in its business plan, aiming to extend the company to new verticals that include communications, media, entertainment and much more.
However they will still be focusing on Gaming, which Mark Zuckerberg, CEO and founder of Facebook, said in his statement:
“After games, we’re going to make Oculus a platform for many other experiences, imagine enjoying a court side seat at a game, studying in a classroom of students and teachers all over the world or consulting with a doctor face-to-face — just by putting on goggles in your home.”
“This is really a new communication platform,” Zuckerberg continued. “By feeling truly present, you can share unbounded spaces and experiences with the people in your life. Imagine sharing not just moments with your friends online, but entire experiences and adventures.”
Oculus will also remain in its headquarters in Irvine, CA where it will continue the development of the Oculus Rift.
“The Oculus team can focus on what we do best,” Brendan Iribe, co-founder and CEO of Oculus VR, said. “We’re teaming up with Facebook to invent the future.”
“We are excited to work with Mark and the Facebook team to deliver the very best virtual reality platform in the world,” Iribe continued. “We believe virtual reality will be heavily defined by social experiences that connect people in magical, new ways. It is a transformative and disruptive technology, that enables the world to experience the impossible, and it’s only just the beginning.”
Some people might not be as happy for this deal, and one such person to already pull out of the project is Minecraft’s creator Notch, who has decided to cancel their development for the Oculus Rift after the Facebook buyout, Tweeting the following:
“We were in talks about maybe bringing a version of Minecraft to Oculus, I just cancelled that deal. Facebook creeps me out.”
If you are feeling the same way, you can also cancel your pre-order of the Oculus Rift as according to the Oculus VR support page, which states that “You can cancel your order prior to entering the “processing” phase (usually within 1-2 business days of purchase).” However for those which have already been shipped you cannot, with the page stating that all sales are final,
The deal is worth $2 billion and includes $400 million in cash and 23.1 million in shares of Facebook common stock, and is expected to close in the second quarter of 2014.