Technology

Facebook Inc Hires Top VR Exec From Google X

Oculur VR, the virtual reality technology company, owned by Facebook hired Google X executive Mary Lou Jepsen, according to re/code based on information from peoples familiar with the matter.

Facebook bought Oculus VR for $2 billion last year. “Oculus has the chance to create the most social platform ever and change the way we work, play and communicate,” said CEO Mark Zuckerberg in a previous statement.

Facebook Inc Hires Top VR Exec From Google X

Facebook confirmed the hiring

A spokesman from Facebook confirmed that Oculus VR hired Jepsen, but he did not provide any detail regarding her role in the virtual reality technology company.

“We continue to seek out the best and brightest from around the world to help push VR to the next level,” according to the spokesperson.

About Mary Lou Jepsen

Jepsen led the Display Division at Google X for three years. During her tenure at the search engine giant, she led two “moonshot projects” and reported directly to Sergey Brin, co-founder of Google.

One of her projects at the search engine giant’s laboratory was the Google Lego TV, which features a new display technology that allows smaller screens to connect to create a seamless image and live screen. She will be joining Oculus VR sometime this month.

Jepsen is the co-founder and founding CTO of One Laptop per Child, which aims to drive the price of laptops lower from $2000 to $100 to provide more educational opportunities for children in Third World countries.

She was named top 50 female scientists by the Anita Borg Institute. She was also named as one of the 100 Most Influential People in the world by Time Magazine while CNN recognized her as one of the Top 10 Thinkers.

Jepsen has a background in multiple disciplines including computer science, electrical engineering, media art, physics, and neuroscience.

She received a BS in Electrical Engineering with Honors and BA in Studio Art from Brown University.

Updates on Facebook’s internet.org efforts

During Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Zuckerberg provided updates on the efforts of Facebook in providing internet access to people worldwide that are not yet connected through internet.org.

According to him, Facebook allowed almost 7 million people used mobile data for the first time as a direct result of its partnerships.
The rate if acquisition of new data customers for operators increased by at least 40% in countries where the social network giant launched the internet.org app.

Zuckerberg added that the number of people using data on Tigo’s network in Columbia increased by 50%. Tigo’s monthly smartphone sales climbed ten folds in Tanzania since the launching of internet.org app.
Airtel also saw an increase in the number of people using data in Zambia, Kenya, and Ghana. Data usage, voice and SMS activity also grew across Africa.

Zuckerberg said, “We can help because Facebook is one of the primary apps people want to use. It drives data usage and means we can effectively partner with operators in order to accelerate the growth of their businesses.”