AltspaceVR Is Back Online; Did Palmer Luckey Save It?

Isn't it funny how quickly things can change in the technology industry? AltspaceVR was set to close on August 3, but the company kept the lights on a little longer to get one more shot at securing funding, and that decision appears to have paid off. The company announced that its VR social platform is here to stay thanks to support from the AltspaceVR community.

On August 3, AltspaceVR held a farewell party as the last chance for its community members to say goodbye to the platform, but following the party, Eric Romo, AltspaceVR’s Founder and CEO, sent a tweet that gave a glimmer of hope for the future of the social VR platform. The executive decided to keep the platform running a little bit longer “just in case.” Now, it seems that “just in case” panned out to be a sure thing.  

AltspaceVR didn’t release any details about the sudden change, but it suggested that the community’s reaction to the closure had much to do with it. “Thanks to that outpouring of support, we’re now deep in discussions with others who are passionate about AltspaceVR who want to guarantee that our virtual oasis stays open,” read the company’s announcement. (You can read the full statement here.)

We don’t know exactly what or who saved AltspaceVR, but it’s entirely possible that Palmer Luckey had something to do with it. On July 29, Palmer Luckey started a poll on Twitter asking if he should try to save AltspaceVR. Luckey’s query received 5,493 votes, with 87% of the tally saying yes, he should save the platform. Cymatic Bruce, one of the public faces at AltspaceVR, quickly replied to Luckey’s tweet saying that Luckey could send him a private message for more details. That doesn’t guarantee that Luckey had anything to do with saving AltspaceVR, but the fact that he beat the official AltspaceVR Twitter account to the announcement by 12 minutes suggests that he’s on the inside of this deal.

We reached out to AltspaceVR for more information, but the company isn’t ready to talk about the details yet. A company representative said more information would be released in the "coming days and weeks ahead." We've also reached out to Luckey for comment. If either offers more information about AltspaceVR's stay of life, we'll update this post.

 Kevin Carbotte is a contributing writer for Tom's Hardware who primarily covers VR and AR hardware. He has been writing for us for more than four years. 

  • Kennyy Evony
    sounds to me like they were trying to play a sympathy card for extra funding they didn't actually need.
  • bochica
    I didn't think it was in trouble, though I haven't used it in a while. The idea they have is a good one, but it isn't getting in front of enough people I guess. I don't have a VR setup yet, but it is still playable with mouse and keyboard.