In an email to UploadVR, AltspaceVR announced that it will be releasing a “new version of its software” that consists of a “mobile app that fully supports Google Daydream View and also provides access into AltspaceVR for compatible Android phones even without a virtual reality (VR) headset.”
AltspaceVR is a social, virtual reality experience in which you and your friends can meet, speak, play games and otherwise interact inside virtual reality. In the app, you are represented as one of a handful of different avatars. Your avatar’s head moves in response to yours and, depending on what hardware you have, you can even bring your hands into the experience as well to communicate using gestures and body language.
By bringing its software to the Daydream View and non-VR Android smartphones, AltspaceVR has become one of the most comprehensive, cross-platform VR programs on the market. The app is already available for the HTC Vive, Oculus Rift and Samsung GearVR. That left Daydream and PSVR as the last remaining device for AltspaceVR to conquer on VR’s Mt. Rushmore of notable headsets. Daydream is in the bag now, but in a Reddit post from last October, AltSpaceVR reps spoke to PSVR support saying: “being cross-platform, and available for as many people as possible, is hyper important to us at AltspaceVR. That said, we’ve got nothing to announce about PSVR.”
“We are excited about serving Daydream customers, which could number in the tens of millions by the end of the year,” Eric Romo, founder and CEO of AltspaceVR said in a statement. “We are looking forward to providing them with the wide range of activities and events that are available in AltspaceVR, and connecting them with their friends on other platforms.”
The most exciting part of this news, however, has to be the Android support. In a 2015 report on Android Central, Google claimed that there were over 1.4 billion Android enabled devices around the. With two more years of growth since then, that number could easily now be above 2 billion. Giving that many people a glimpse into a VR world, even if it’s a restricted experience, could provide a massive boost to VR’s adoption rate.
According to AltspaceVR, the updated app has a “mobile view feature,” which allows users to “enter AltspaceVR even without Daydream or any VR headset, using just the screen on their phone and audio headphones or earbuds.”
AltspaceVR also has a similar “two dimensional mode” available now for PC and Mac. AltspaceVR is available now on the Google Play Store for free.