Full text of Mark Zuckerberg’s keynote speech at Samsung Galaxy Unpacked 2016 as part of Mobile World Congress at Barcelona.
Listen to the MP3 Audio here: Mark Zuckerberg at Samsung Galaxy Unpacked 2016- VR is the next social platform
Announcer: Ladies and gentlemen, please give a warm welcome to Founder and CEO of Facebook Mark Zuckerberg.
Mark Zuckerberg – Founder and CEO, Facebook
Hey, it’s great to be here. It’s an honor to be here today.
I started learning how to program computers when I was 11 years old. And I still remember sitting in my middle school math class, writing out code in my notebook because I hadn’t computer with me, and drawing sketches of a world where instead of just navigating to 2D websites, you could transport yourself entirely to a whole another place and feel like you were really there in reality. And since then, I’ve been interested in this idea of virtual reality and I’ve been waiting for the day to come when we could deliver this experience.
Now, today, thanks to this partnership between Samsung and Facebook, this is now possible, and that day is here. And it wouldn’t be possible to deliver this experience of this scale and this price without Samsung’s experience and excellence in hardware and systems and all of Facebook’s experience delivering software and of course with Oculus technology.
At Facebook, we think about giving people richer and richer tools for sharing and experiencing everything that they want in the world. Going back about 10 years, most of what we shared and experienced was text and then it was photos and now we’re entering into a world where that’s video. But pretty soon we’re going to live in a world where everyone has the power to share and experience whole scenes as if you’re just there right there in person.
You know, I think about my baby daughter and the way that I want to remember when she takes her first steps. When I took my first steps, my parents just took a pen and wrote down the date in the baby bum. When my cousin — when her son took his first steps, she took a photo with a camera. My sister, when her son took his first steps, she took a video on her phone. But I want to capture the whole scene. So I hope that we can take a 360 video, so that way even if my parents and my family aren’t there to experience it in person, they can feel like they’re right there with us.
VR is the next platform where anyone can create and experience anything that they want. Right now, VR is still mostly used for games and entertainment but that’s quickly evolving. And one day you’re going to be able to put on a headset and that’s going to change the way that you live and work and communicate.
So imagine being able to sit in front of a campfire and hang out with your friends anytime you want, or be able to watch a movie in a private theater with your friends anytime you want.
Imagine holding a group meeting or event anywhere in the world that you want. All of these things are going to be possible and that’s what Facebook is investing so much early on in virtual reality, so we can help to deliver these kinds of new social experiences. VR is going to be the most social platform.
Now that’s also why we’ve worked with Samsung to deliver Gear VR. Gear VR is by far the best mobile VR experience, and that’s because it combines the best hardware from Samsung with the best VR software from Facebook with Oculus. Samsung is the only company in the world that can deliver at scale the low-persistence OLED screens that are required to give a good comfortable VR experience. And that’s because these OLED screens are the only screens that can update faster than [UI]. No other screen and display your company can deliver this experience.
Samsung is the leader in designing and shipping hardware like the Gear VR quickly and affordably. And of course, we’ve used Oculus software to deliver other aspects of high quality VR like head tracking, really fast rendering, 360 sound and of course a whole ecosystem of apps and content through the Oculus store. Together this is by far the best mobile VR experience that you can get.
Now we’ve also worked with Samsung to make Gear VR affordable. Last summer, Jay Lee and I went for a walk and we talked about how we can bring this experience to the most people possible. And after that, we decided to target a $99 price and we’ve worked hard to refine the hardware to make this possible. And the results are in and it’s already paying off, because this year millions of people will get their hands on a Gear VR. There are already more than 200 games and apps available for Gear VR in the Oculus store.
And here’s a new stat for you. More than 1 million hours of video have already been watched in Gear VR. So we’ve only just started to explore what’s possible with video and VR. And as we work with Samsung to build this experience for Gear VR, we’re also working to push the home state of the technology forward.
So in over the last year we’ve been working to make Facebook the best platform for 360 videos. And video is already some of the most engaging content that you will see online. There are already every day more than a hundred million hours of video content are watched on Facebook. But 360 videos are even more immersive, because you aren’t just watching passively, you feel like you’re actually there. You’re actually surfing in Tahiti or flying with the Blue Angels or exploring the surface of Mars. Our community already loves 360 videos and every day already more than a million people are watching 360 videos on Facebook. More than 20,000 of them have been uploaded and hundreds of new ones are uploaded every day.
But it’s still really early for 360 videos, and we’re only a few years into experiencing this kind of high quality 360 content. But one day soon all of us are going to have the power to broadcast live what we’re doing whenever we want, because that way our friends and families and the people we care about can experience it as if they’re right there with us.
But of course, to get there we’re going to have to solve a lot of really complex technology and engineering challenges. An example of an important breakthrough we call Dynamic Streaming for VR video. The idea is that instead of delivering the whole video in a high resolution, we just focus on the part that you’re looking at. And this allows us to deliver the video with a much higher resolution and quality, about 4X while also reducing the overall bandwidth consumed for streaming the video by about 4X. So this is just one example of how Facebook is driving all this VR software forward.