Google’s decision to leave virtual reality over the phone could benefit the developers. The Internet giant is releasing an open-source paperboard project that will allow developers to create virtual reality experiences and add paperboard support to their applications.
It covers basics like head tracking, lens distortion and input rendering, but also includes a QR code library to make sure you are not using Google’s cardboard to couple viewers. Between this and existing open source tools, homebrew viewers, businesses and teams can build all the hardware and software they need without asking for help from Google.
The company is not relieved of all responsibilities. It’s promising to add new features to the project, including a development kit for the Unity Game Engine.
This will mainly help developers adapt to new phone ads and other changes without waiting for Google.
The open source effort could be a relief to some. Cardboard is generally considered to be one of the cheapest ways to experience virtual reality, and Google has stated that it is still “consistently” used in leisure time and in schools.
If Google had simply stopped working in the pits, the future of these efforts would have been uncertain at best: the open code at least offers developers some options to keep their projects alive.
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