Alphabet Inc's Google gives its competitors HTC, Microsoft and Facebook a run for their money. The company has recently created its dedicated virtual reality (VR) computing division that confirms Google's existence in the virtual reality arena. Product manager Clay Bavor has been named as the Vice President of this newly launched division, holding prior experience in handling Google Cardboard.
Experts earlier foresaw the current virtual reality market demand a breakthrough $1 billion in with an estimated sale of 2.5 million pieces headsets in 2016. With Google's surprise appearance, a senior member of the IEEE (The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) Dr. Kevin Curran told CBR that "Virtual Reality is the future. It is a no-brainer for those in the tech industry."
Google's first ever VR, the Google Cardboard, was launched back in 2014. Placing their smart phones in a designated spot within the box, the device allowed users to watch through the screen at ease and experience VR. This allowed mass consumers to experience mobile VR at a lower price than its competitors (priced 10 pounds at Amazon).
In 2015 Google teamed up with action camera-maker GoPro to elevate 360-degree experiences to another level, armed with Google’s latest technologies and marketing watchable videos through YouTube. These videos can be experienced with these VR headsets using their smart phones.
Although Google seeks to innovate further from its VR cardboard, the device has nonetheless proven to be of utmost use. Inserting an iPhone into the Google Cardboard, a pediatric surgeon in Florida carried out a successful cardiovascular surgery on a 4 months old.
The year 2016 is expected to reign the huge market for VR with all the tech-giants gearing up, including Samsung, Facebook, HTC and Microsoft and now Google. Facebook’s subsidiary Oculus Rift has already started taking headset orders. Samsung's $99 tagged Gear VR, powered by Oculus headset, reflects the promise of sophisticated virtual reality being delivered at a populist price. Facebook's Oculus Rift is ready to start shipping in March this year for $599, the headset is said to have a built-in headphones and microphone, a sensor and an Xbox One controller.