Sansar and High Fidelity Back Away From VR
Two of the major social virtual reality platforms, Sansar and High Fidelity, have decided to pull back from VR as a primary technology for their respective applications.
Previously reported at RoadToVR, each of the social platforms has cited “slow growth” as the reason for their decisions.
Philip Rosedale, CEO of High Fidelity and founder of Second Life, announced at a High Fidelity community meeting recently that the company will be scaling back their VR efforts, focusing more on improving their PC and Mac performance. The company has also shut down all first-party user spaces and associated servers except for a single orientation room, which will be used for new users only.
Speaking to New World Notes at GDC 2019 in March, Linden Lab CEO Ebbe Altberg says the company’s latest platform has always been a majority desktop experience ever since it went live back in 2017, and it seems he doesn’t expect that to change in the near term. “Statistically, it’s always been a majority PC, desktop. I don’t know what the exact numbers are: 75/25, 80/20, of […] desktop versus VR. And so you’ll probably be seeing us less pitching it as a VR thing,” Altberg told New World Notes.
This is disheartening for fans of social VR, but several other social platforms remain committed to their VR plans: AltSpace, RecRoom, and VRChat. All three of these applications are likely to be available on the upcoming Oculus Quest standalone headset, available later this spring.
Sansar and High Fidelity, perhaps due to higher graphical requirements requiring a desktop computer, have not made plans for availability on the Oculus Quest.
See below for more details at RoadToVR:
Roy Kachur is a Media Technologist, IT Architect, and VR Evangelist. He has worked in the information technology field since the 1990’s, and in the media industry since 2014. He believes that VR will play a significant role in the future of media.