Facebook is already in the virtual reality business, thanks to its acquisition of Oculus and its Rift headset. However, the company is working on some other VR-based technology and it demoed some of it today at its F8 conference.
Facebook CTO Mike Schroepfer and Social VR team member Michael Booth got together virtually in the demo. As Booth writes on Facebook:
Today at F8, Schrep and I demonstrated a simple exploration we've hacked together which shows the potential of VR for social interactions. Physically, he was in San Francisco and I was 30 miles away in Menlo Park, but as soon as we both put on our headsets we were together, sharing the same virtual space. But it was more than just an awesome conference call - we could visit faraway places, literally stepping into 360 photos, touring the sights of London, and visiting the hangar where Facebook's Aquila unmanned aerial vehicle is housed. We could be creative together, using virtual pens to draw objects and decorate our avatars. We could create new memories, and even take a VR selfie and post it back to News Feed.
Booth added that the Facebook Social VR team is working to improve the experience, including the creation of a more detailed and expressive model of a human rather than just a floating head and hands.