It seems like this is the year that VR is going to go mainstream. Multiple headsets from Samsung have already been released, and it looks like the Oculus Rift, the HTC Vive, and Sony’s Project Morpheus will finally be launched to the masses. It looks like Google has taken notice of all these “premium” devices and is ramping up its VR efforts to compete.
Google already has an incredible base for its VR ambitions. The DIY Google Cardboard has been an incredible success, and has allowed the masses to experience the immersiveness of virtual reality for mere pennies. If recent job listings and hirings are any indication though, it looks like Google is going to be building on this base in a big way in an effort to create a more premium headset that can compete with the best available.
Google has posted four different positions that would relate to the creation of a new virtual reality headset. The listings include, Hardware Engineering Technical Lead Manager VR, Engineering Project Specialist VR, Electrical Hardware Engineer VR, and lastly, PCB Layout Engineer VR. If you match these listings with the recent hiring of Youtube alumni, Jason Toff, it looks like a compelling argument can be made for Google cranking up its VR efforts.
It really makes sense for Google to make a more immersive headset that can compete with Samsung’s Gear VR or the soon to be released Oculus Rift. Google has already leveraged the power of Android to make its Cardboard initiative the go to place for an entry level VR experience. They can leverage Android’s power once again to make its more premium headset the absolute best place to go for a more immersive experience. While Samsung may be the biggest Android manufacturer, the amount of phones compatible with its VR solution pales in comparison to the amount of phones that, theoretically, will be able to work with Google’s headset.
This is all just speculation, and at this point it is impossible to know if Google will develop a more premium headset. The wording in the listings is vague and these jobs could merely go towards creating new VR apps, or a newer version of Cardboard. Hopefully though, Google does push to make a more premium headset that can work with phones from all the fantastic Android manufacturers just like its Cardboard does.
Source: Road to VR