Google’s VR team hires developer behind one of the Vive’s best apps

Logan Olson, developer of awesome virtual reality music creation tool SoundStage, is joining Clay Bavor’s VR team at Google. SoundStage lets you assemble and operate a music studio in the virtual space around you using the HTC Vive headset and wireless controllers — it’s like Tilt Brush for techno. I said it “feels like a visionary application” after spending time with it last year.

“We’re excited to welcome Logan to the Google VR team,” a Google spokesperson tells The Verge. “As a leader in thinking about creating in VR with his app SoundStage, we’re really inspired by what he’s built and for the potential for VR and creativity.“

SoundStage came out of its Early Access state on Steam last month with a 1.0 release that brought several new features but marked the end of active development. (It’s also since been made available for the Oculus Rift.) Olson joining Google does confirm that SoundStage will never grow into a serious Logic Pro or Ableton Live competitor — not that it could have anyway, in all likelihood — but Google says it’ll build on what he’s learned for existing and upcoming products.

Google launched its promising Daydream VR platform alongside the Pixel and Pixel XL phones last fall, but news has been quiet in recent months. Few other manufacturers have announced Daydream-compatible devices since then, and the Pixel’s limited availability may well have limited Daydream’s visibility. If nothing else, though, Olson’s hiring shows that Google is still interested in investing in the creative possibilities of VR following the 2015 acquisition of the team behind Tilt Brush.

Comments

I’ve been super disappointed with Daydream. It seemed like a good idea with a lot of promise, but it appears as though Google has completely abandoned it already.

Abandonware© Google

Let’s be honest, Daydream was half-assed from the start. Google’s own Pixel devices have a hard time with it. I can fry eggs on a Pixel phone after 10mins in Daydream.

Ditto. If the heat in my house ever goes out in the dead of winter, I’ll just run my phone in the Daydream for a few minutes, and we’ll all be nice and warm.

They will be the new GTX 480

Google hasn’t abandoned anything in VR, there’s people joining their VR efforts all the time but they relatively recently started all these efforts so it’s going to take time. I’m not sure about how much of it is targeted towards mobile VR right now, I think they’re very excited about Vive there, more so than Oculus right now.

I was so excited for Daydream and traded in my S7 Edge in for a pixel only to be absolutely disappointed in the content and the overheating issues. So I plugged in a friends S7 Edge last week to check on what Samsung had been up to only to find a vibrant thriving app market with tons of apps and active development. The Oculus tie in was a master stroke for Samsung and will carry them as far as this era of mobile VR is going to go.

I’m a hobbyist VR dev and mobile VR is a bit of a mystery to me. I have the GearVR but just can’t bring myself to create anything for it without more advanced control schemes.

There’s only so much you can do with look and tap.

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