It would appear that Mark Zuckerberg’s word on social networking in virtual reality are coming to fruition sooner than expected. Oculus and Samsung have announced that anyone with a Samsung Gear VR (powered by Oculus) will be able to create their own profile for a new social network within the virtual realm. This system will allow users to search for friends on the platform, play social games, and create rooms in Oculus Social. Oculus Video and Facebook Video Content will also be able to be shared via Facebook.
The Samsung Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 Edge, Galaxy S6, Galaxy S6 Edge, and Galaxy Note 5 and 4 will be able to take advantage of this social networking business first. They’re the first of the Samsung devices to be able to work with Gear VR, of course, and will therefore have first access.
Some social features, games, and experiences are already available in Samsung’s Gear VR smartphone-based virtual reality headset. You’ve been able to sit on a log with virtual friends and watch Twitch or YouTube. You’ve been able to enter a room and play table tennis with friends in the virtual realm as well.
What this update does is to tie all social aspects of the VR universe together for simplification. Also to give you a sense of ownership over what you’re seeing and what you’re sharing, your profile will make you more “real” in the Oculus-based universe.
We’ll expect much of this to come to Oculus Rift when time comes for that headset to be delivered to users as well.
Social Games like Social Trivia (made by Oculus) will be active this week alongside the “multiplayer adventure game” by the name of Herobound: Gladiators.
Users will be able to connect their Facebook account to Oculus Video starting next week. With this connection, users will be able to “personalize their 360 video feed” based on which pages and people they follow.
According to Oculus, Users will soon be able to like, share, and react to Facebook 360 videos from within VR, as well.