Efficient eye tracking will allow Facebook to understand consumers’ expressions better

Published By: Ken Bock on December 29, 2016 07:44 am EST

Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) Oculus announced on Wednesday, December 28 that it has acquired Eye Tribe – Copenhagen-based eye tracking startup. The acquisition marks as an important step in the company’s efforts to improve virtual reality (VR) experience for its consumers. However, FB shares traded in red yesterday, declining about 0.92% during active trading.

According to Bloomberg, Eye Tribe is the most recent deal in a series of tech purchases made by Oculus this year. Moreover, it suggested that Facebook is particularly interested in eye tracking because it aims at taking lead in social interactions via enhanced VR experience. The report stated, “Facebook Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg is interested in helping people watch basketball games together, have board meetings, travel to foreign countries and take selfies in VR.”

Facebook also believes that efficient eye tracking will make it easier for the company to understand people’s expressions. Moreover, this will allow the consumers to communicate more effectively with each other, within virtual world. It will further allow the tech giant to control its consumers’ mobile or VR experience.

The $339.11 billion company aims at using Eye Tribe’s $99 eye tracking device developer kits for computers. With this transaction, the company hopes to benefit from the acquired company’s software, which may bring gaze-based interfaces to smartphones and VR headsets. Furthermore, Facebook can also take advantage of Eye Tribe’s upcoming Santa Cruz wireless standalone headset, which creates a focal point which moves with the consumer’s eyes. This would allow the company to demonstrate more complex scenes, with higher frame rates.

The details of the deal remain unknown. According to TechCrunch, it is also unclear what Oculus will exactly do with the technology despite its various potential uses. However, investors continue to be bullish over this development.