Oculus has released the Carmel Developer preview – enabling developers to build and test content for the web on Oculus headsets. It is available as a Gallery app for Gear VR on the Oculus Store.
WebVR is very much an unknown but this preview goes some way to providing an insight through Oculus’ own browser. It is important to note that that the Carmel Developer is currently just a preview though. It lacks an address bar – because it is predominantly for testing, not exploring, WebVR content – and does not display existing 2D web content.
Oculus says developers will be able to either use samples included with Carmel or build on top of their WebGL framework of choice. It expects ‘these experiences to run on most existing devices and be easy to adapt for Carmel using the WebVR API.’
The Facebook-owned VR company has plans to introduce React VR to enable developers to use a React-based model with a set of pre-defined UI components to build VR and 360° experiences. It also plans a Carmel browser, and partner collaborations with major browser makers.
This is still early days in the world of the WebVR API and it is important to note that Firefox and Chrome have also already incorporated WebVR into their developer versions. Oculus believes that the API’s configuration could reach general availability in mid-2017 amongst ‘most major browser vendors’.