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WebVR API Transitions to W3C Incubation


The WebVR API has officially begun its transition to the W3C WebVR Community Group!

In finalizing the recent WebVR v1.0 API spec, we formed the WebVR Community Group within the W3C. Our goal: to help bring high-performance virtual reality to the open Web through JavaScript-based APIs to access VR devices, sensors, and head-mounted displays.

In 2014, Vlad Vukićević prototyped builds of Firefox with Oculus Rift DK1 support, and Brandon Jones followed with experimental WebVR builds of Chromium. Together, they drafted an informal WebVR API spec that served folks well until earlier this year in March 2016 when we announced the new-and-improved WebVR v1.0 API proposal.

Is WebVR a standard yet?

The WebVR API spec is not yet a bonafide standard. We're hosting all development and discussion of the WebVR spec in the W3C Community Group. (All issues and commits from our old MozVR/webvr-spec GitHub repo have been migrated to our new home, the W3C/webvr repo.)

These are significant milestones in getting WebVR one day on the standards track, and we couldn't be more excited! But, at the current time, we have not yet started making it a W3C standard. As a community group, we are beginning to have discussions before committing to a particular standards body.

How to participate

Feel free to join the W3C WebVR Community Group (only a W3C account, not W3C membership, is necessary).

If you'd like to participate in shaping the spec, feel free to file new issues or jump into conversations in existing issues.

To learn more about how the latest version of the WebVR API works, read this article - and, of course, the spec.

For general WebVR information, go to WebVR.info. You can also check up-to-date platform status of the WebVR APIs at IsWebVRReady.org. Lastly, you can hop in the WebVR Slack to ask questions, give feedback, and hang out with the rest of the WebVR community.


Thanks to the following people who supported the creation of the W3C WebVR Community Group: Chris Van Wiemeersch, Anssi Kostiainen, Brandon Jones, Diego Marcos, Malik Butler, Daniel Appelquist, Laszlo Gombos, Tee Jia Hen, Arturo Paracuellos, and Donovan Kraeker.

We'd like to give special thanks to those who contributed to the creation of and continue to shape the WebVR API specification: Vlad Vukićević (Mozilla), Brandon Jones (Google), Kearwood “Kip” Gilbert (Mozilla), Chris Van Wiemeersch (Mozilla), Justin Rogers (Microsoft), Michael Blix (Samsung), and Brian Chirls (Datavized).

Lastly, we have to thank the always helpful and patient W3C standards gurus who continue to help us with WebVR's transition to the W3C Community Group: Anssi Kostiainen (Intel, W3C Spec Editor & Chair), Dominique Hazael-Massieux (W3C Staff), and Wayne Carr (Intel, W3C Advisory Committee).

P.S. For a trip down memory lane, check out this passage from Tony Parisi's Learning Virtual Reality book.