Hugo Barra is leaving the Oculus team for a Facebook ‘global AR/VR partner’ initiative

Hugo Barra, the former Xiaomi executive who has managed the Oculus VR Facebook team since 2017, is changing roles in what appears to be a larger reorganization in virtual reality on Facebook. Barra announced on Twitter that would be "taking on a new role [at Facebook] in the construction of a global ecosystem of AR / VR partners based in New York City." He is being replaced by Erick Tseng, former director of product management at Facebook. [19659002] Bar is being transferred just before Oculus launches its new Quest mobile headset. Echoing many of the company's previous statements, he says that "Oculus' first-generation VR alignment is now complete," and "it's time to take on the next big challenge: bring AR and VR to more people!" Tseng, meanwhile, said he was "excited to go back to my consumer hardware roots and join a team that is transforming science fiction into reality."

A Facebook spokesperson told The Verge that Oculus was positioned on Facebook was not changing. "With Quest, Rift S and Oculus Go, we now have a full portfolio of VR products and will continue to build future generations," the spokesperson said. "As we move towards a world in which VR and AR devices are the mainstream, we will have to expand and significantly invest in the ecosystem of global partners to make them available to all. Hugo is the perfect person to lead this effort after overseeing the product and global strategy for so many years. "

At least another Oculus executive is getting a new title: Jason Rubin, former vice president of content for Oculus, is now the vice president of "special gaming initiatives." Rubin describes the role as "He's working on gaming communities that have a positive impact," and he's not completely focused on virtual reality: will be "will continue to work on more excellent content for virtual reality while exploring other exciting opportunities related to the game wherever they are. "The Oculus content director role will be filled by Michael Verdu, formerly a member of the Electronic Arts mobile division.

Facebook has been turning Oculus into a more general augmented and virtual reality division for some time. The company has not had its own CEO since 2016, and Facebook started grouping its Oculus headset and its Smart Portal camera into the broad category of "VR / AR". We also know that Facebook is interested in producing AR glasses and VR generation headphones, probably based on the research of Oculus chief scientist Michael Abrash.

The Barra statement matches the standard Oculus line in Search. The company says it is wrapping up its current generation of hardware products and is still discovering what "second generation" virtual reality would be like, and according to that logic, it makes sense for Barra to focus on building an ecosystem for the products that they have. . I already have it. But it could also be a precursor to Facebook that integrates more Oculus products into a larger line of hardware and software that includes AR devices.

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