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Jumpstart to the Virtual Reality Business
Virtual reality has been a long standing dream in tech and sci-fi. In June, Oculus VR of Irvine, Calif., “raised $16 million to finish research and development on its critically acclaimed virtual reality headgear, and today the company’s taking the next step.” The company has now secured another $75 million in Series B funding.”They’re not just betting that their game will be successful, they’re also betting that Oculus will sell enough units to make their game profitable, and that’s a really big bet for a developer to make,” says Palmer Luckey, Oculus founder.
Oculus CEO Brendan Iribe tells The Verge that his company needs the money to build that consumer product, plain and simple. “Marc Andreessen himself is joining the Oculus board, along with fellow partner Chris Dixon, and it’s a brand-new version of the headset that convinced them to join in.” Chris Dixon tells The Verge, that he “was impressed with the first developer kit he saw last year, but not enough to invest.” However, at this particular point, Oculus has moved ahead and is now on his radar. All investors are doubling down.
While the company has not divulged details on when it will push the consumer version of the VR headset, it has already sold 40,000 of its Oculus developer Rift kits, and has expectations to move another 70,000 pieces out into the marketplace. Interestingly, the company declined to say whether they were profitable or in losses. They did mention however, that “much of its initial funding is still in the bank.”
The Oculus Rift will have to fight the good fight and face an uphill battle at their launch. For the most part, the regular consumer has not accepted “fancy headgear that promises improved visuals, both in the videogame and broader consumer electronics markets.” All efforts to promote awareness of the product, to engage customers, and to affect consumer adoption have fallen by the wayside.
Image Credit: www.theverge.comJumpstart to the Virtual Reality Business by Jaan