At the Google I/O keynote, Google didn't bring the new virtual reality headset as rumored. While many were disappointed with no stand-alone Android VR headset that was seen, Google came up with the pretty exciting Daydream platform.
The Daydream platform is meant for the future phone-based VR devices including new viewer hardware, next-gen handsets, VR-friendly controllers, and a fresh set of apps that will take advantage of it.
Google is highly optimistic with the Daydream platform
Google seems to be aimed at making the virtual reality platform a mass market offering. At the Google I/O, Brahim Elbouchikhi, the senior product manager stated that there will be hundreds of millions of users using the Daydream devices in a couple of years.
In order to keep them entertained, Google expects the app developers to build highly interactive experiences and avoid using freemium mechanics that might break the concentration of users.
Huawei to make Daydream-ready phones
It is expected that the first Daydream-ready hardware will be landing this fall. At the keynote session, Google claimed that the manufacturers such as Samsung, LG, HTC, Asus, ZTE, Alcatel, and Xiaomi will come up with such smartphones.
Meanwhile, it looks like Huawei will also be one of the first device makers to come up with Daydream compatible models. Huawei has mentioned that it looks forward to work with Google and bring compelling and rich Daydream experiences to the users.
However, it is not clear if Huawei will launch Daydream devices by the year end or just made announcements of the potential devices. Even Xiaomi is in collaboration with Google and it is working on a Daydream-ready smartphone.
Android apps getting optimized for VR platform
Daydream is nothing but a VR platform for many Android apps, especially content streaming and gaming. Play Store has been redesigned to support Daydream letting users browse and download the apps from a 360-degree shelf.
Even Google Photos and YouTube have been optimized for VR letting users view regular content on a virtual movie screen apart from watching 360-degree videos in a normal fashion.
News publications such as Hulu, Netflix, HBO, and others also support Daydream.
Dev teases fall debut of Daydream
NetEase is planning to bring Twilight Pioneers app to Daydream. At the Google I/O, the CEO of the company talked about how he is excited to be a part of the first devs who are committed to Daydream.
The app will be premiered concurrent with the launch of the Daydream platform in November this year.
Besides smartphones, a controller and new headsets will also be launched by the end of this year.