After dabbling in virtual reality with Google Cardboard for the last few years, at I/O 2016 Google finally revealed a comprehensive plan for the emerging technology.
Daydream, a software platform built into Android N, the Mountain View, California-based company’s upcoming mobile OS update, as well as a “reference design” for Samsung Gear VR-like low-cost virtual reality headsets, combine to create Google’s vision for the future of accessible virtual reality. However, it looks like it will be a few months until the platform rolls out, with a November 2016 launch date currently set for Daydream devices and software.
China-based NetEase, one of Daydream’s early partners, recently stated that it plans to release its upcoming VR title Twilight Pioneers at the same time as Daydream, specifically citing a November 2016 release date.
“NetEase will premiere Twilight Pioneers concurrent with the launch of Daydream,” reads a statement from the developer. Furthermore, Clay Bavor, Google’s vice president of virtual reality, stated that Daydream will be available in “fall of this year,” during I/O 2016’s keynote.
A variety of developers, including CCP Games, the creators of Gunjack for the Gear VR and Eve Valkyrie on the Oculus Rift, Electronic Arts, one of the gaming industry’s largest video game developers, as well as various movie and television content providers, have signed on to create content for Daydream. It’s likely, however, that Canadians won’t get access to the VR version of HBO Now and Hulu, two video streaming platforms that have yet to make their way to Canada (and probably never will).
Canadian developer MinorityVR also revealed that it plans to be one of the first developers to release software for Google’s Daydream. The sister studio of award wining Montreal-based Minority Media plans to release LifeLineVR.
Related reading: Google’s new Allo app wants to turn us all into chat bots