Will Facebook Be The New Second Life?

In case you missed it, Mark Zuckerberg unveiled rather lofty plans to venture out into the Virtual Reality world, Facebook style. This probably doesn’t come as a big surprise considering Facebook’s acquisition of Oculus Rift, but is this a wise move for the social media overlord?

The plan is to take virtual reality way beyond gaming and turn it into a “Social Virtual Reality” that will be, of course, integrated with the Facebook platform. With the first orders of the Oculus Rift shipping out in just a few weeks, the timing was intentional.

“VR is going to be the most social platform,” Zuckerberg said on Sunday at Samsung’s Galaxy S7 event. “Facebook, with Oculus, are committed to this for the long term. We’ve recently created new teams at Facebook to build the next generation of social apps and VR.”

Although the details are quite vague for the scope of what is envisioned by incorporating Oculus Rift with Facebook, it was made clear that one of the goals is to enable Facebook users to be able to interact in a way that lets them feel as if they’re in the same room. Although that sounds pretty interesting, at this stage it would be hard to imagine how that would be executed in a way that would be more personal than, say, just a far less expensive video chat. Time will tell.

There were also implications that there will be a way to play games through this VR route, which could prove to be fun and possibly interactive. But, there isn’t much more detail as far as what is being planned. We can only speculate and hope.

My personal thoughts? I think it’s an expected development. I do think it’s a positive move to push towards encouraging the exploration of virtual reality. But, do I think it would ever be an adequate alternative to Second Life? Can’t say that I do, spare the ability to engage with people that are not currently in Second Life. And Second Life has a depth of capability that is yet unmatched.

I’d imagine Mark would make this very user-friendly, but I can’t see this becoming a “thing” for quite a long time. It will prove a challenge to take a free platform that is accessible to so many and add on equipment that was marked up far higher than initial estimates.

What are your thoughts?

Bria Oceanside
ZoHa Blogger/Social Media