We all know that Google stays well ahead of curve when it comes to new technologies. After all, the company was the first to truly enter the augmented reality space with Google Glass. While Google Glass has seemingly been put on the back burner, at least for the time being, it’s virtual reality that may be the next big area for the Company to excel at. Google has stated that there are already over 5 million Google Cardboard VR headsets in user’s hands. The headsets, which turn nearly any smartphone into a cheap, yet powerful VR consumption device, were announced approximately two years ago and truly have become a staple of the VR industry thus far.
It’s become quite apparent that Google Cardboard is only just the beginning of the company’s VR plans, and if one is to believe rumors, Google has something big coming, which could blow Cardboard out of the water. While rumors have predicted that a Samsung Gear VR-like device may be offered by Google this summer, perhaps being unveiled at Google I/O 2016 on May 18-20, the company and their VP of VR, Clay Bavor, have remained tight-lipped about their plans, to say the least. In fact, despite being part of a lengthy interview with Wired this week, Bavor didn’t give away very much at all.
“We’ve been hiding behind Cardboard,” Bavor told Wired. “We have a whole building of people here, and they’re not working on thicker versions of Google Cardboard or Cardboard with recycled material.”
Bavor did revealed some of his long term visions of the technology in general, and those visions seem to indicate that he believes VR technology will progress much more rapidly than many of his colleagues within the space have predicted.
“For an experience that feels vividly real, where you’re going to be scared of those lions, it’s going to happen a lot sooner than people realize,” explained Bevor. When asked by Wired what he sees within 5-10 years, he replied, “I think you’ll be approaching…I’m not sure if I’m seeing a real reality or a simulated reality.”
This is a rather expedited view of the technology’s potential progress, and coming from the VP of VR at one of the world’s most tech-savvy companies certainly adds a lot of weight to his predictions. There is no doubt that with billions of dollars being poured into the research and development of new virtual and augmented reality technologies, the rate of change within the industry will be staggering. With that said, there are many obstacles to overcome before almost indistinguishable VR worlds are able to be experienced by us all within our living rooms.
No matter what happens within the industry over the coming years, the next decade certainly promises to revolutionize the way we experience new things, entertain ourselves and interact with one another. Let’s hear your thoughts on where VR technology is headed next. Discuss in the Future of VR forum on VRTalk.com.