Facebook Spaces makes virtual reality a social experience
You'll be able to hang out with friends in 3D with the social media giant's new VR platform, released to software developers Tuesday at the F8 conference.
Laura HautalaFormer Senior Writer
Laura wrote about e-commerce and Amazon, and she occasionally covered cool science topics. Previously, she broke down cybersecurity and privacy issues for CNET readers. Laura is based in Tacoma, Washington, and was into sourdough before the pandemic.
ExpertiseE-commerce, Amazon, earned wage access, online marketplaces, direct to consumer, unions, labor and employment, supply chain, cybersecurity, privacy, stalkerware, hacking.Credentials
2022 Eddie Award for a single article in consumer technology
Watch this: Facebook Spaces is wacky and made for VR selfies
On Tuesday, we saw the future of virtual reality on Facebook. They're calling it Facebook Spaces, and it shouldn't be a surprise that it's all about hanging out with your Facebook friends -- in virtual reality.
It'll start with an avatar that you can customize to look just like you, and from there you can invite other Facebook friends to hang out in Spaces, or you can call them with Facebook messenger and invite them into a VR chat. Together, you can look at Facebook 360 video, draw and hold different objects and show off pictures in a virtual reality slide show.
"This is the easiest it's ever been to bring the real you into VR," said Rachel Franklin, head of social VR at Facebook.
Franklin announced the platform at Facebook's annual developer conference, F8, on Tuesday. The platform, which is in beta, is now available for Oculus Rift headset users. It will also eventually be open to software developers so they can build on what Facebook has started.
Franklin pointed out that people find the experience of VR to be very real. If your avatar takes a selfie, you tend to smile in real life, too, for example.
"It's still you in VR," said Rachel Franklin, head of social VR at Facebook. "You're connecting with others in a more immersive way."