Oculus is putting the finishing touches on the mobile version of its platform for developers, with a 1.0 version of its software development kit released in November and its audio kit released earlier this month for immersive sound in VR. The only thing still missing are forthcoming social tools that will make it easier for developers to create shared VR experiences, but that’s not keeping Oculus from encouraging developers to upgrade their Gear VR apps immediately to version 1.0 of the SDK.
In a blog post, Oculus noted that starting Jan. 1 “we’ve decided to start requiring Mobile SDK 1.0 or higher for all new updates and store submissions” because that version of the development kit “marked the transition from an experimental interface to a more mature, stable API focused on maximum performance.”
Separately, Oculus Chief Technology Officer John Carmack responded on Twitter to a question about screen recording on the Gear VR. He clarified that the feature is offered in the most recent update to the Oculus app on Samsung phones. However, the functionality still has to be implemented by developers using this latest SDK in order for people to use it.
@vrgamerdude It is in the new system update. Only works on apps build against 1.0 SDK. No user level interface yet, but I’ll post for devs.
— John Carmack (@ID_AA_Carmack) December 16, 2015
With the pressure on to update apps by Jan. 1, we should start seeing mobile VR developers activating screen recording within their apps very soon. This should, in turn, lead to an uptick in the number of hands-on videos on Youtube depicting Gear VR experiences. That’s an important step for spreading knowledge to consumers about how a wide range of Oculus mobile apps actually feel to play. Currently, an ad like the one below from Samsung only offers a taste of what the Gear VR is actually like.