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Oculus VR nets $75m in funding

Oculus VR nets $75m in funding

Fri 13 Dec 2013 8:24am GMT / 3:24am EST / 12:24am PST
HardwarePublishingDevelopment

New investment will be used to build consumer version of the Oculus Rift headset

Oculus VR has secured a further $75 million in investment to finalise the consumer version of its highly anticipated virtual reality head-set.

The series B round was led by Andreessen Horowitz, and featured contributions from Spark Capital, Matrix Partners and Formation 8. Marc Andreessen, founder of Netscape and the driving force behind Andreessen Horowitz, will join the Oculus VR board.

"Over the past 16 months, we've grown from a start-up to a company whose virtual reality headset is poised to change the way we play, work and communicate," said Oculus VR CEO Brendan Iribe said in a statement issued to the press.

"40,000 developers and enthusiasts, as well as a number of great partners, have joined our cause and helped us bring the seemingly impossible to life. This additional infusion of capital, as well as the leadership and experience of Marc Andreessen, will help us take the final steps toward our ultimate goal: making virtual reality something consumers everywhere can enjoy."

Andreessen stated his belief that the Oculus Rift would revolutionise not just games, but film, education, architecture and design.

"The games industry is well past the point where more pixels, texels, flops, and frames displayed on the same fixed screens are really changing the experiences that players get," said Oculus CTO John Carmack, who joined the company full-time last month after resigning his position at id Software.

"I could say the same about other digital experiences as well. What will revolutionize gaming, and interactive content in general, is putting people inside the digital world. That is our goal at Oculus, and this Series B will help us get there,"

The size of this latest investment proves just how much faith is being placed in the Oculus Rift. In June, the company raised $16 million in its first round of funding.

16 Comments

VR goes serious with boatloads of fundin. Well done!

Posted:A year ago

#1

Steven Hodgson Programmer, Code in Progress Ltd

85 122 1.4
I'm looking forward to new generation of games that have the Oculus in mind. Also to seeing the final product quality too.

Posted:A year ago

#2

Todd Weidner Founder, Big Daddy Game Studio

429 1,027 2.4
great news, very excited to see where this all leads.

Posted:A year ago

#3

Craig Page Programmer

390 233 0.6
Imagine this with a wii-mote in each hand, playing a first person shooter where you actually have to aim your gun realistically.

It will further complicate the thousand year old debate of gamepad vs (keyboard + mouse).

Posted:A year ago

#4

Steven Hodgson Programmer, Code in Progress Ltd

85 122 1.4
It will further complicate the thousand year old debate of gamepad vs (keyboard + mouse).
The war will never end, it'll evolve into typing of the dead style accessories

Posted:A year ago

#5

Kenneth Bruton Producer

38 8 0.2
I look forward to what Oculus Rift holds out to consumers, provided they can distribute them at a reasonable price.

Posted:A year ago

#6

Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys!

2,196 1,176 0.5
I still think this will be a bust as a home product for a few reasons but will make a MINT as some sort of pay per play arcade/movie/travel entertainment experience. Not everyone has a great gaming PC, the barrier to set up is going to be above the heads of many consumers who prefer their tech to be simpler out of the box with no fiddling required and even at $300 (or a subsidized lower price), it'll be something that's bought, used a few times and put away once the novelty wears off.

I'm NOT saying the tech isn't sound, folks - I'm just saying that outside thrilled game developers and journalists bouncing up and down at every opportunity to say how great it is, the general public with their short attention spans will be "meh-ing" this as a fad even if it's all over the news as the next big thing. It will succeed to some extent, but it won't catch on unless it's a mandated evolution.

Posted:A year ago

#7

Eric Leisy VR Production Designer, Nike

117 127 1.1
I hear you Greg, and what you're saying makes sense. I think really what this will be is the harbinger of what is to come. The big companies are going to look at this as a trial run, and I do believe this is going to succeed on the level of the core gamer. I do not know a single core gamer friend who isn't incredibly excited about this. If the first maiden version of a VR headset costs $300, that is a good start - and these things will only get cheaper as market acceptance comes about. This isn't going to work for every type of game, so I have to agree that this is going to be SOMEWHAT of a niche product, at least when it comes to games. I do think it will be a revolutionary step forward though.

Posted:A year ago

#8
I am more interested in what the actual machine that runs the games for these VR systems - it ain't a PS4 or a Xbone!

Posted:A year ago

#9

Todd Weidner Founder, Big Daddy Game Studio

429 1,027 2.4
Have you tried it Greg? Its an evolution in gaming, people who try it almost always ask they same thing, where can they get one, how much does/will it cost. Its not a novelty or gimmick, its IMHO the next evolution in gaming.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Todd Weidner on 15th December 2013 6:47am

Posted:A year ago

#10

Murray Lorden Game Designer & Developer, MUZBOZ

203 72 0.4
Really looking forward to buying one when the retail HD version is ready! :)

(Also can't wait to develop for it!)

Posted:A year ago

#11

Neil Hall Senior Lecturer in Games Animation, Teesside University

22 16 0.7
It will eventually get picked up by a console. Perhaps, not this model or even make, but I can't see it staying with PC for long.

I've played it quite a few times, now, and I still get dizzy and nauseous after taking it off. Everyone I know who has used it has also felt this way to some degree. It's messing with my mojo! I hope it succeeds, mind... probably in the virtual porn industry! LOL!

Posted:A year ago

#12

Sandy Lobban , Noise Me Up

319 231 0.7
Itll be interesting to see how the audio side of things is resolved when using a VR headsets. Stereoscopic audio would complete the picture, but Im not sure how viable wearing headsets and headphones is. Never tried it.

Posted:A year ago

#13
@Sandy
Binaural Audio has been a big opportunity, along with spacial audio systems for the original VR platforms - I hope that it will also play a big part in the application of VR his time round.

Posted:A year ago

#14

Greg Wilcox Creator, Destroy All Fanboys!

2,196 1,176 0.5
Todd:

It's ALWAYS like that with new tech and again, I'm not saying it's NOT going to succeed at all.

I just think there are assorted elements that, until they're worked out, will keep this out of the hands of people who may want to buy it, but are all thumbs once they open any product box. I've worked in retail in the past (electronics and video games), and the amount of people who aren't capable of getting past a few lines in a manual is astounding. As I said, the tech folks and others ready will eat this up, but the average person on the street is going to maybe do a demo somewhere, but it and not use it much unless they're going to use it outside gaming applications and there's content made for it.

Some of you guys will take care of that, but is Hollywood on board yet? I think any actual major commercial success outside the gamers whom buy in day one will be in cinema or some non-gaming applications (such as the virtual tour idea I've seen and heard talked about) where people don't mind spending whatever it costs for a trip to wherever that's a lot less than a plane ticket.

Posted:A year ago

#15

robert troughton UK General Manager, Epic Games

224 100 0.4
Imagine this with a wii-mote in each hand, playing a first person shooter where you actually have to aim your gun realistically.
You mean like STEM? (http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/89577853/stem-system-the-best-way-to-interact-with-virtual) ... STEM controllers will be amazing for this - we used the earlier version of the hardware back in 2010 for a project that we did for the NHS. The controllers we used then gave full 6DOF as well as full 3d positioning (to 1mm accuracy). Since STEM uses magnetic fields, it doesn't suffer from the camera occlusion problems that Kinect and PS Eye do.

Posted:A year ago

#16

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