This year is very exit rich, it would seem as we are writing about them nearly every week. Yesterday, the news broke that Facebook, namely the Oculus Rift division, has acquired the Swedish startup – 13th Lab for an undisclosed amount along with another startup – Nimble VR. As a reminder, Oculus Rift itself was acquired by Facebook for a whopping $2 billion in order to focus on making any experiences possible – virtually, as commented by Mark Zuckerberg.
When we attended the Dublin Web Summit, we got a demo of the Crescent Bay prototype by Brendan Iribe himself. If you have tried the previous versions, then trust us – this is a thousand times more impressive. Literally, I had to think for like 10 seconds whether I was back in reality or not after the demo was over. This is how impressive the thing is. Virtual reality is here.
What 13th Lab does is basically a smart way of gathering real-world 3D models. To do this, they build an accurate real-time reconstruction framework. This can help you visit places in real-time. Virtual tourism, virtual concerts, virtual education – you name it. Check out the video of the Old Town of Stockholm done using their SLAM technology:
The deal seems to be an acquihire, as the Oculus Rift announcement mentions that both 13th Lab and Nimble VR will be winding down their current operations and will join the Oculus team full-time. The 13th Lab team will also be moving to the Silicon Valley.