Chrome dev asserts browser is viable VR platform

Google Chrome logoThe ongoing virtual reality battles aren’t just being waged on the hardware side. Software firms are making a big play for the platform—particularly the ones making 3D engines, which game and app makers are heavily relying on to help them create optimized content that looks good and runs at a crisp 90 frames-per-second refresh.

While Unity and Unreal have fetched the most headlines about VR 3D engines, Google might have a surprising game-changer on its hands: the Chrome Web browser.

A Wednesday report from Road to VR surfaced a late-April speech from Google software engineer Boris Smus, and that speech stood out because it stressed efforts by the Chrome team to finally support a 90 frames-per-second refresh for systems such as the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift. Up until recently, the burgeoning WebVR platform had been capped at 60 FPS, which doesn’t reach the necessary visual-smoothness threshold needed to ensure comfort for VR users.

Of course, merely having text and content-scrolling display a few frames faster on your favorite 2D sites isn’t going to set the VR industry on fire, but the WebVR platform is another matter. Until Unity or other engines announce a simple path to enabling browser-based distribution of VR executables, WebVR is poised to be the most solid way to get VR experiences up and running in Chrome, and Smus' demonstration and speech pointed to the platform recognizing and enabling use on the HTC Vive and the Oculus Rift, should developers want to support either or both. Smus specifically showed off a running Chrome demo that recognized the HTC Vive's motion-tracked hand controllers while rendering its visuals at the full 90 FPS refresh, and the demo included full room-scale tracking, as opposed to limited, pseudo-VR content as seen in 360-degree videos.

Chrome dev asserts browser is viable VR platform, targets 90 FPS rendering

WebVR and Chrome's feasibility as an optimized engine remains to be seen, of course, especially as the updates needed for the higher refresh rate have yet to roll out among various Chrome builds. There's also the glaring issue of content creators not necessarily wanting to switch from programming languages such as C# to Javascript. But for ease of access and skipping such distribution channels as Steam and the Oculus Store, Chrome clearly has a leg up on the competition.

But Smus' insistence that the platform is "good enough to deploy real things" is certainly intriguing, and for VR content creators who opt for simpler textures and other rudimentary graphical options—like the kinds that work on weaker platforms like Samsung GearVR—the platform may very well prove suitable and offer a neater distribution path for experimental and film-like content.

Source: Ars Technica

Tags: browsers, Chrome, Google, virtual reality

Comments
Add comment

Your name:
Sign in with:
or
Your comment:


Enter code:

E-mail (not required)
E-mail will not be disclosed to the third party


Last news

 
Consumer group recommends iPhone 8 over anniversary model
 
LTE connections wherever you go and instant waking should come to regular PCs, too
 
That fiction is slowly becoming a reality
 
The Snapdragon 845 octa-core SoC includes the Snapdragon X20 LTE modem
 
Human moderators can help make YouTube a safer place for everyone
 
Google says Progressive Web Apps are the future of app-like webpages
 
All 2018 models to sport the 'notch'
 
The biggest exchange in South Korea, where the BTC/KRW pair is at $14,700 now
The Samsung Galaxy A5 (2017) Review
The evolution of the successful smartphone, now with a waterproof body and USB Type-C
February 7, 2017 /
Samsung Galaxy TabPro S - a tablet with the Windows-keyboard
The first Windows-tablet with the 12-inch display Super AMOLED
June 7, 2016 /
Keyboards for iOS
Ten iOS keyboards review
July 18, 2015 /
Samsung E1200 Mobile Phone Review
A cheap phone with a good screen
March 8, 2015 / 4
Creative Sound Blaster Z sound card review
Good sound for those who are not satisfied with the onboard solution
September 25, 2014 / 2
Samsung Galaxy Gear: Smartwatch at High Price
The first smartwatch from Samsung - almost a smartphone with a small body
December 19, 2013 /
 
 

News Archive

 
 
SuMoTuWeThFrSa
     12
3456789
10111213141516
17181920212223
24252627282930
31      




Poll

Do you use microSD card with your phone?
or leave your own version in comments (4)