Google has finally rolled out its map for making VR accessible to more than a billion people. The Day Dream is the new platform for getting high quality experience on Android smartphone. The purpose of Daydream is to raise the bar of VR experience of common Android users. Google cardboard, though is ultra-low cost VR initiative, but it’s about inferior kind of VR experience. Google knows that until it does not raise the standard of the VR experience for millions of Android users, it will have no chance to standup in the game.
On stage at I/O 2016, Brahim Elbouchikhi, Senior Product Manager on the Google VR team, said:
“…our intention [for Daydream] is to operate at Android scale, meaning hundreds of millions of users using Daydream devices. And the way we get there is through the typical smartphone evolution: where today’s premium devices—the ones that can run VR experiences—are next year’s mid-range, and the following year’s low end devices,” Elbouchikhi told developers in the audience. “So if you take that evolution, you can see that in a couple years,we will have hundreds of millions of users on Daydream Ready devices that are ready to consume the mobile VR experiences that you all are going to build.”
He further said, “The hope is that if in five years we’re collectively working on another frontier technology, that we can look back and say again that we’ve created value, that we went passed the hype and actually delivered real value for users and built a multi-billion dollar business on Daydream. That’s the goal.”
By announcing Daydream, it plans to take the challenge posed by conservative VR players such as Facebook and HTC that are targeting an expensive niche segment. Though, the goal of Google is to reach out to millions of Android users in a couple of years seems ambitious, but one should not forget the huge army of developers and 1 billion active users on the Google Play Store.
There is a difference between Cardboard and Daydream. It’s hardware requirements are stricter to offer better VR experience. Though, it has not divulged the detail about the hardware specifications, but it made clear that the company is collaborating with various manufacturers to make their handsets meet certain specifications such as “specific sensors and screens” as required for Daydream. Many top manufacturers like Samsung, Alcatel, HTC and LG have shown interest in creating Daydream compatible phones.