Oculus is looking to make virtual reality more social by announcing a bunch of cool new features for the Samsung Gear VR headset. Users will now be able to create a profile, play games and watch videos with friends.
The extended support for socializing isn’t a surprising development for a company owned by Facebook. The parent company has expanded its reach with a bit of cross-platform promotion by introducing its 360-degree videos within the Oculus Video space. Users can connect their Facebook account to their Samsung Gear VR and personalize the feed they get based on the pages and people they follow.
The next couple of couple of weeks will also see the arrival of an option to like and share videos directly from the Gear VR. As can be seen in the image above, this includes Facebook’s new set of emoji-esque reactions. Furthermore, Oculus has added the ability to create a room to hang out with friends and watch videos sourced from platforms like Twitch or Vimeo.
Games have become more communal as well. Consumers now have the chance to play against acquaintances or players from around the world in special made-for-VR games. For instance, Social Trivia allows users to battle with up to 4 friends over their knowledge skills and can be found under the Concepts section of the Oculus Store.
Then there’s Herobound: Gladiators, a multiplayer adventure game which lets 5 players team up to defeat goblins and demons. Members can strategize in real time through the integrated voice chat. Oculus is also making it simpler to find people on the Gear VR by allowing them to set up a profile and search for others via their username or real name.
Finally, Oculus is planning to release new developer tools by the end of the month. The move will make it easier for companies to develop social VR games and apps, so you can expect a lot more growth in this area going forward.