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Oculus VR Raises $16M in Funding for Rift Development

By - Source: Oculus VR | B 8 comments

Oculus VR scored a hefty Series A funding round that will help build the best VR headset ever.

Palmer Luckey of Oculus VR said on Monday that the company has raised $16 million USD in a Series A funding round co-led by Spark Capital and Matrix Partners, along with Founders Fund and Formation 8. The funding will be used to accelerate the development of virtual reality hardware, software and services with a goal to create "a full virtual reality platform" that's not only immersive, but affordable for customers. Representatives from Spark and Matrix have also joined the Oculus VR board of directors.

"We were fortunate enough to be able to pick investors who we thought would be a great fit," he said. "They really believe in our vision for the future of VR. These are people who have taken companies from startup to mass market many times, entrepreneurs who have a ton of meaningful experience building hardware and software consumer technology."

Oculus VR originally generated $2.4 million in funding through its Kickstarter campaign, nearly ten times the project's goal. Development kits were shipped earlier this year, but so far the company has only hinted to a 2014 release window. However Oculus VR CEO Brandan Iribe said there is still a lot more work to be done before the headset is ready for the masses.

"There are still many challenging problems to solve, but with the support of these great investment partners, and our passionate community, we will continue to hire the brightest minds and stay laser focused on delivering the very best virtual reality platform possible," he said.

In the blog published on Monday, Luckey said that the funding will help the company hire "the best and brightest minds in VR from around the world", and to experiment and prototype with more cutting-edge technology. "It allows us to build a badass, consumer VR gaming platform, the likes of which the world has never seen," he said.

"I got into VR because it seemed like the obvious path to the best possible gaming experience, but never expected it to take off so quickly," he said. "In less than a year, incredible game developers all over the world are building games designed explicitly for virtual reality, and people are beginning to understand that the tech is finally viable. Even with 'next generation' consoles on the horizon, VR still came away with dozens of awards and accolades at E3."

While we didn't get a chance to meet with Oculus VR at E3 2013 last week, we did get a taste of Half-Life 2 on the Oculus Rift. Totally badass? You bet, and then some.

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  • 0 Hide
    nevilence , June 18, 2013 6:10 PM
    i am watching this space very intently
  • 0 Hide
    battler624 , June 18, 2013 6:17 PM
    I wish next-gen consoles implement this.
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    altriss , June 18, 2013 6:58 PM
    I still don't know how to feel about this product.
    It is definitely a child dream to have such a immersive system, but more and more this kind of technology get us away from our nearby world.
    Can you immagine the PS5 or XBOX next gen with this kind of tools? ans then when you play with your friends in the same room you no longer see them. It feels like we are all going to get our dedicated world but none of us will be able to share it...

    So more than the technology itself I am looking for the way they want to implement it and what kind of applications they expect form it.

    Anyone who have an idea? (appart from Doom-like games of course...)
  • 0 Hide
    spectrewind , June 18, 2013 10:51 PM
    I would LOVE to play some kind of combat flight sim with one of these.
  • 0 Hide
    cats_Paw , June 19, 2013 1:19 AM
    I just hope that Spark and Matrix dont destroy the idea like EA/BIoware or Activision/Blizzard.
  • 0 Hide
    Casey Wainwright , June 19, 2013 4:19 AM
    Quote:
    I would LOVE to play some kind of combat flight sim with one of these.

    If the flight sim looked like this video of the real F35 helmet it'd be like playing a video game!...is that full circle? :wahoo: 

    Skip 4mins in...
    http://gizmodo.com/5248464/how-the-f+35-demon-helmet-looks-inside
  • 0 Hide
    techslave3 , June 19, 2013 6:03 AM
    The screen shots ought to be interesting.
  • 0 Hide
    TechnoD , June 19, 2013 11:30 AM
    Quote:
    I would LOVE to play some kind of combat flight sim with one of these.


    Thankfully, there already is one. here:
    warthunder.com
    its called war thunder, I've been playing it for about a few months now. really fun, and if you look under the video options, there is now oculus rift support.
    ....Did i mention its free?