Facebook’s power-play to rule social virtual reality has a boring name: the “Coordinated App Launch API”. Like a VR version of Xbox Live or PlayStation network, it lets you gather with friends in Oculus VR’s new Rooms feature, and then launch together into a developer’s multiplayer game. The Coordinated App Launch API could make Oculus the portal to playing with friends in VR, giving it immense power over developer experience discovery.
Starting today you’ll be able to try out the fruits of this API, as Oculus is launching “Rooms” for the Gear VR mobile headset today, with Rift support coming in 2017. It’s also launching “Parties” audio calls for coordinating meetups while you’re doing something else in VR. Meanwhile, developers can now try out Livestreaming so they can share their experience back to Facebook for people without a headset. Oculus first announced these features in October at the Oculus Connect 3 conference.