The annual F8 developers conference brought lots of satisfaction to its attendees - both spiritual and materialistic: Mark Zuckerberg revealed the Facebook's 10-year plan and granted all visitors Samsung Gear VR virtual reality headsets along with the smartphones of the same company.
Big plans and great presents - what could get more attention from both local and world audience? Speaking of plans: it looks like Facebook is about to undergo multiple changes, providing its users with most curious opportunities, and there are three key goals this social network is determined to reach within the next ten years.
Decade of Virtual Reality
The headsets and the smartphones, granted to attendees, had their purpose. Virtual and augmented reality seems to obtain an important place in the company's plan for the future.
"Artificial Intelligence will power all kinds of different services with better than human level perception and we'll see the emergence of the next major computing platform in virtual and augmented reality," said Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg. "These are all elements of our 10 year roadmap to connect the world and each of these elements is in service of our mission. It's about bringing people together, that's what we do here."
During the conference Zuckerberg described the future design of VR and AR glasses (that will ideally look just the same as normal glasses do) and also presented the Surround 360 camera.
The latter invention could make the creation of VR content for Facebook's Oculus Rift easy as a pie - however, the price for this tool was not named and its availability for the common user remains unknown so far.
What does seem a bit off though, it's the visible intention of developers not simply to build Facebook in the already existing world of virtual reality, but to make something like Matrix out of this social network. The chief scientist of Oculus VR, Michael Abrash, declared: "Unlike Morpheus, I'm not offering you a choice [of pills] today.
No matter what you pick, we're heading down the rabbit hole together." It might sound ambitious, however, it expresses a desire to develop a whole virtual infrastructure, which sounds both ambitious and... uncomfortable.
Decade of Business Messaging
Despite certain problems with the recent chatbots trials, Facebook awaits great achievements from its Messenger app. According to Zuckerberg, the Messenger app is going to be open for the developers that will allow them building chatbots right into it, so that the users would be able to communicate with businesses directly, without the necessity to get help from third-party websites.
The current Messenger team used the conference to present the bots that already live in the service - Poncho the Weather Cat that gives the daily forecast, for example, and 1-800-Flowers bot that stands for the business with the same name. 1-800-Flowers bot allows texting instead of calling to make the order - and there is even no need to enter the app.
Facebook's vice president of messaging products David Marcus announced: "We think that the combination of UI and conversation is what is going to make this work."
Decade of Live Video
A huge part of the main updates and changes that await Facebook in the next ten years is tightly connected with video. The developers spend lots of efforts to popularize the Facebook Live option.
Zuckerberg made a demonstration right during the conference and with the help of the drone proved that all you need to stream on Facebook Live is a smart camera. Currently the team also works on the option that will make it possible for the programmers to insert the Facebook Live videos into their apps.
Virtual reality as a new trend of informal communication, messaging as a new way of business communication, never-ending video stream on your account - it surely looks like Mark Zuckerberg plans on taking over the world.
It's hard to define which of main three goals is going to be more challenging for the Facebook team, however, two things are obvious.
First, all of them provide absolutely thrilling opportunities for the users, and second - in case at least one of the goals will be successfully achieved, Facebook's influence on physical life of its users will increase enormously.
So let's wait and see how Mark Zuckerberg's 10-year plan will turn out.