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“How the Oculus Rift Pre-order Scandal connects to Microsoft Xbox Two, and why Oculus Touch might…
About a month ago there was this story on Reddit, and extremely convincing story about how Microsoft was responsible for the Oculus Rift…
“How the Oculus Rift Pre-order Scandal connects to Microsoft Xbox Two, and why Oculus Touch might be delayed into 2017"
About a month ago there was this story on Reddit, and extremely convincing story about how Microsoft was responsible for the Oculus Rift being delayed by 3+ months. This story was later discredited by the Oculus Sub Reddit itself presumably because someone at Oculus contacted the Sub Reddit to discredit it.
The story original said that the reason the pre-orders were delayed was because Oculus had unexpectedly sold far more preorders than they thought they were going to sell. Over 300,000.
The author claimed to be an Oculus insider and indicated that someone from Microsoft had promised the Oculus team that they would have plenty of Xbox controllers to go with the Oculus Rift when it was time to ship, except that Microsoft did not have enough Xbox controllers to fill all the preorders because Microsoft was also caught off guard by the large number of presales, and they had no where near enough Xbox controllers on hand to give to Oculus. This put Team Oculus at Facebook into a mad scramble to buy as many Xbox controllers as they could from every company that had already been shipped Xbox controllers.
You can read the original story here
The key point of interest for me is that this story was so persuasive and so interesting that the people who managed the Oculus Sub Reddit actually had to do some research to find out from someone at Oculus if this was true or not. Curiously they were able to confirm that this story was fake. How did they confirm it was fake? We don’t know for sure, but if we assume that they are being honest and that they know its fake, it might be because someone who was confirmed to actually work at Oculus told them it was fake. I will rephrase that: Someone who was able to prove that they worked at Oculus most likely confirmed that it was a false rumor.
Now here is the weird thing, why is it out of all the rumors and fake stories on Facebook, that someone from the Oculus Team would even bother to confirm to a reddit moderator that this story was fake? Oculus doesn’t comment on every Reddit story.
Why would someone from Oculus go out of their way to make sure no one believed the story that Microsoft was responsible for the pre-order delays?
Was there another reason they might have wanted to shield their partner Microsoft? Could that have something to do with a secret plan to create a version of the Oculus Rift for the next version of Microsoft Xbox?
On April 21st there was a story on Arstechnica about AMD reporting three System on a Chip deliveries, this was a big business deal for AMD
AMD expects $1.5B in future revenue for three new gaming processors-but what are they?
During AMD's Q1 2016 earnings call on Thursday, executives from AMD estimated a 15 percent revenue increase in Q2 2016,…arstechnica.com
AMD was unable to confirm who these three deliveries were going to, but the article suggests these were going to console makers like Nintendo NX, Playstation NEO, and a new Xbox. It suggested that there might be an Xbox 1.5 in the near future. Later another article suggested that the new Xbox would be called Xbox Two, but it would still be backwards and reverse compatible with Xbox One.
The basic idea is that all three of the major console makers are sort of jointly releasing new consoles with similar hardware to save on costs and to support game developers so game creators can make more money. A key component of this mid-console-generation upgrade is that these consoles will emphasize backwards compatibility with the previous generation of consoles, as well as reverse compatibility. This means that new games for the new consoles will also work on the older consoles.
For example all the Playstation 4 games will run on Playstation Neo, and Playstation Neo games will run on Playstation 4, albiet in a reduced graphics mode. All this is designed to support both developers and players. It also lowers the risk and the costs for all three of the major makers, allowing the console gaming industry as a whole to be more competitive against the pc gaming industry, the phone gaming industry, and other non-gaming industries such as music, movies, and television.
Since the Arstechnica story we have seen a growing number of stories about the rumored upcoming Xbox Two console which is supposed to premiere at E3. This 4K Xbox Two console is going to be powerful enough to power a high end desktop class Virtual Reality experience. Thus the relationship between Microsoft’s Xbox division (Xbox Controller) and Facebook’s VR division (Oculus Rift) takes on a new meaning.
We also have to consider the Microsoft and Oculus both want to be able to compete with the low cost Playstation VR experience, so creating a version of the Oculus Rift for the Xbox Two makes a ton of sense. Without a deal like this the Oculus Rift would be between a rock and a hard place. Especially with new rumors that suggest that the Oculus Touch has been delayed to 2017. The Oculus Rift is going to need a big win to distract from another issue that would potentially anger a lot of Oculus supporters and that is the delay of the Touch controllers.
There are a couple of industry insiders who have dropped the idea that the Oculus Touch has been secretly delayed to 2017.
The first time I heard this rumor was from a talk given by Timoni West who is a VR Designer from Unity Labs who can be seen using the Oculus Touch on stage at the Vision Summit to demonstrate the Unity VR Editor Tool. I was there in the audience when she demoed this it was totally amazing. You can watch that demo here:
More recently Timoni West gave another MUST SEE talk at “Lets GO CYBERSPACE VIRTUAL REALITY UX” In the 20 minute talk she drops mention of the Oculus Touch being set for delivery “NEXT YEAR” right after the 04:30 mark
The fact is that Timoni does not work at Oculus, so it’s not official, and she probably doesn’t know for sure what the Oculus Touch release date is, but considering how closely Unity works with Oculus, if anyone knew about a secret delay of the Oculus Touch, it would be someone from Unity.
It might be that Timoni is just making an educated guess, but then I heard the rumor again, from another person who would also probably know. Unfortunately the second time I heard the rumor was not in a publically available talk so I can’t cite the talk or disclose who it was, as it was something heard during a private conversation.
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