Google Plans To Add VR To Chrome Browser

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The Chromium team, those that work on Google’s native web browser, Chrome, will look to get the platform ready for users of mobile devices running Android according to former Chrome leaker, turned employee.

Get paid to talk about Chrome, get paid to talk about Chrome by Google

François Beaufort used to spend his nights diving into Google browser code and providing users with early feature leaks. Google either got tired of it or decided it best to officially provide him with information they wanted him to spread and in a win/win situation, the company announced that they were hiring him as a “Chrome Ambassador” in March of 2013.

On the heels of the I/O developers conference held a couple of months ago in May, it’s clear that Google sees a future in virtual reality and wishes to do more than make content accessible on its YouTube property which has become a leader in providing VR content.

While Chrome users simply browsing the internet might not notice it at first, it will help developers add VR content.

“They’ve … been working towards WebVR support in Chromium and launched VR view to help web developers embed VR content in their web pages,” Beaufort said on Google+.

Google’s plans beyond Cardboard, YouTube

While Google released a bargain-basement VR viewer, which utilizes your smartphone in Cardboard, the company clearly sees that companies like Oculus, Samsung and HTC are interesting the public with their respective viewers” the Rift, VR and Vive ahead of Google’s unannounced but expected viewer that is expected to be made out of more than just corrugated paper.

This “browser shell”, that is WebVR, allows users of VR devices to access sites that weren’t otherwise available to them and forced them to remove their headsets in order to see the page.

For the average user these features are still a way’s away, with WebVR only offered for Chrome Beta and VR View limited to Google’s native browser for developers. That said, for those that own viewers, they can head to Google Play in order to download each app to get a head start on their friends.

Google is well aware of the fact that many use Apple iOS on their iPads and iPhones and will be offering those users a chance to keep up with this move to VR.

“Starting today, there’ll be a native Cardboard SDK for iOS, [which] … includes all of the features already available in the Cardboard SDK for Android,” wrote Google this week.



About the Author

Brendan Byrne
While studying economics, Brendan found himself comfortably falling down the rabbit hole of restaurant work, ultimately opening a consulting business and working as a private wine buyer. On a whim, he moved to China, and in his first week following a triumphant pub quiz victory, he found himself bleeding on the floor based on his arrogance. The same man who put him there offered him a job lecturing for the University of Wales in various sister universities throughout the Middle Kingdom. While primarily lecturing in descriptive and comparative statistics, Brendan simultaneously earned an Msc in Banking and International Finance from the University of Wales-Bangor. He's presently doing something he hates, respecting French people. Well, two, his wife and her mother in the lovely town of Antigua, Guatemala. To contact Brendan or give him an exclusive, please contact him at theflask@gmail.com