How to turn the game on the upper floors.
While Facebook is preparing to release its next wave of virtual reality headsets (VR) at the end of this month, the company has begun reshuffling the core team at Oculus, and Hugo Barra and Jason Rubin are moving to new positions.
Taking a new role @facebook building a global AR / VR partner after an amazing 2 years leading a @oculus team. With our Quest shipping 5/21, our first-gen VR lineup is now complete.
– Hugo Barra (@hbarra) May 9, 2019
Taking a new role in @facebook, we are creating a global AR / VR partner ecosystem based in New York after more than two years of leadership of the @oculus team. With the release of Ques, which will become available on 5/21, our line of first-generation virtual machines has been completed. Now I have the opportunity to take the next big challenge – to make AR and VR devices available to more people!
Earlier, at Xiaomi, Barra became the head of Oculus after he moved from Brendan Iribe in 2017, and now he moves to the position of vice president of AR / VR partnership. His place will be taken by Eric Tseng, who previously served as director of AR / VR product management at Facebook.
As for Jason Rubin, one of Oculus’s oldest executives, who previously served as vice president of content and co-founded Naughty Dog and also participated in the creation of Crash Bandicoot and Jax and Daxter, will now be Vice President of Special Game Initiatives. His replacement will be Michael Verdu, who previously held the position of senior vice president of Electronic Arts, chief creative director of Zynga and co-founder of Legend Entertainment.
It continues to integrate Oculus into Facebook as a brand, and not as a separate company since its purchase in 2014. There have been numerous management changes, the closure of Oculus Story Studios and the re-branding of Oculus Research on Facebook Reality Labs. The changes also show Facebook’s growing interest in Augmented Reality (AR), such as Barra’s new post and some of the vacancies the company has recently published.
I have a new role @facebook: VP Special Gaming Initiatives, working on positively impacting game communities. Related, @michael_verdu is joining Oculus as Director of Content. I will continue to work w / Mike & @oculusgaming
– Jason Rubin (@Jason_Rubin) May 9, 2019
I have a new @facebook: VP Special Gaming Initiatives role that involves working on a positive impact on gaming communities. In this regard, @michael_verdu joins Oculus as director of content. I will continue to work with Mike and @oculusgaming to bring more quality content into virtual reality!
During the recent F8 2019 conference, Facebook Reality Labs showed its vision of the future of virtual reality with avatars for the whole body, and also announced the launch of pre-orders for Oculus Quest and Oculus Rift S, which will arrive worldwide on May 21. For a standalone headset, more than 50 titles were identified, plus the device was integrated into Oculus for Business.
How these changes will affect Oculus in the long run, and what strategies have implemented Zeng and Verdu, is still unknown, although in a statement for the Variety publication on Tseng, a Facebook representative said:
“With these changes with the Oculus brand or our product portfolio, everything remains the same.”
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