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GearVR apparently won't work if you "block facebook"

Krejlooc

Banned


CyberReality is a frequent oculus employee who speaks to developers. What you are seeing is a series of posts on the developer board about trouble shooting a GearVR problem. CyberReality mentions to make sure that facebook "isn't blocked." The GearVR troubleshooting guide you get mentions unblocking certain applications if you are having trouble, but never mentions any sort of facebook app by name. This is the first time it has been explicitly mentioned.

Several people are dinking around ATM trying to figure out precisely what "block facebook" means and why you would need facebook to be unblocked to use a local application on your GearVR.
 

A-V-B

Member
Facebook owns it. They want you to not block Facebook. What'd you think was gonna happen? *confused*
 

low-G

Member
So when Facebook dies these things will be bricks?

(If we are to hold them to the standards of game makers, and this hardware costs more money than a single game)
 

A-V-B

Member
You think that's okay huh? How many more of you are out there? Ugh.

Never said that. It's just unsurprising. Of course Facebook is going to tell you not to block Facebook for a Facebook-owned product. They want you to be connected to Facebook.
 

Crayon

Member
Never said that. It's just unsurprising. Of course Facebook is going to tell you not to block Facebook for a Facebook-owned product. They want you to be connected to Facebook.

Yeah I think we all understand the strategy.

 

Krejlooc

Banned
Never said that. It's just unsurprising. Of course Facebook is going to tell you not to block Facebook for a Facebook-owned product. They want you to be connected to Facebook.

this isn't telling you not to block facebook, This is preventing unrelated hardware from functioning if you block facebook. Do you really not see the difference?
 

Krejlooc

Banned
Maybe GearVR downloads firmware/driver updates from Facebook?

Drivers and firmware updates are sideloaded with GearVR. It ships with a microSD card with all that stuff on there. I wasn't even connected to the internet the first time I used my GearVR.

And Oculus has it's own domain, separate from Facebook.com

Also. This is essentially online only, then?

You can use GearVR with no internet connection currently.
 

A-V-B

Member
My expectation would be that a local application doesn't require to phone home to Facebook to work.

Of course it's an expectation.

And of course VR opens up all sorts of interesting new opportunities for data collection. Sooooo if you're Facebook, why not?

Not arguing for it being good or bad. Just how it functions.
 

hohoXD123

Member
Never said that. It's just unsurprising. Of course Facebook is going to tell you not to block Facebook for a Facebook-owned product. They want you to be connected to Facebook.
When has anything like this ever happened? Of course this is surprising.
 

Krejlooc

Banned
Of course it's an expectation.

And of course VR opens up all sorts of interesting new opportunities for data collection. Sooooo if you're Facebook, why not?

This isn't expected at all, and it's pissing off a lot of VR developers... precisely because Oculus has been telling devs for a long time that data collection of this sort wouldn't happen.

Why not? Because this flies against what you've been telling devs for a long time now.
 

A-V-B

Member
This isn't expected at all, and it's pissing off a lot of VR developers... precisely because Oculus has been telling devs for a long time that data collection of this sort wouldn't happen.

Then all I guess you can do is cross your fingers and hope devs flock to other VR platforms.
 

Chobel

Member
Drivers and firmware updates are sideloaded with GearVR. It ships with a microSD card with all that stuff on there. I wasn't even connected to the internet the first time I used my GearVR.

And Oculus has it's own domain, separate from Facebook.com

So requiring connection to Facebook is pretty much bullshit then. There's no excuse for this.
 

Krejlooc

Banned
Another dumb decision from Oculus after dropping non-Windows platforms for active support.

These are the sorts of things that will ruin their business outside of gaming. In fact, this poses a huge problem for me right now - I'm working in medicine, we are developing an application for GearVR right now. We had a meeting with an MD Anderson personnel just yesterday about patient privacy concerns, and what we could and could not do. One of our big sticking points was offsite data collection - it's flat out not allowed. Our concerns was actually in relation to another piece of hardware that wasn't the GearVR, and we had to work around it.

Now I have the pleasure of going back there on tuesday and telling them about this. This is the type of shit that might cause us to ultimately move to another platform entirely.

Is this also required for Oculus?

Currently, no, but when the final version ships, most likely.
 

JambiBum

Member
So has anyone (on gaf or elsewhere) actually tried blocking facebook to see what happens or are people just going off of this post? I don't have a GearVR so I can't test it myself.
 

Chobel

Member
These are the sorts of things that will ruin their business outside of gaming. In fact, this poses a huge problem for me right now - I'm working in medicine, we are developing an application for GearVR right now. We had a meeting with an MD Anderson personnel just yesterday about patient privacy concerns, and what we could and could not do. One of our big sticking points was offsite data collection - it's flat out not allowed. Our concerns was actually in relation to another piece of hardware that wasn't the GearVR, and we had to work around it.

Now I have the pleasure of going back there on tuesday and telling them about this. This is the type of shit that might cause us to ultimately move to another platform entirely.



Currently, no, but when the final version ships, most likely.

Is there an alternative for GearVR in mobile sector?
 

Krejlooc

Banned
So has anyone (on gaf or elsewhere) actually tried blocking facebook to see what happens or are people just going off of this post? I don't have a GearVR so I can't test it myself.

I don't have the model of GearVR they are speaking about in the OP. My model works when I both block the facebook domain and when I uninstall the application.
 

Justinh

Member
No sir, I don't like it!

These are the sorts of things that will ruin their business outside of gaming. In fact, this poses a huge problem for me right now - I'm working in medicine, we are developing an application for GearVR right now. We had a meeting with an MD Anderson personnel just yesterday about patient privacy concerns, and what we could and could not do. One of our big sticking points was offsite data collection - it's flat out not allowed. Our concerns was actually in relation to another piece of hardware that wasn't the GearVR, and we had to work around it.

Now I have the pleasure of going back there on tuesday and telling them about this. This is the type of shit that might cause us to ultimately move to another platform entirely.

I wonder if they even considered applications such as yours, this is interesting.
 

Krejlooc

Banned
Is there an alternative for GearVR in mobile sector?

There are a few unannounced projects in the works that we have been hearing about. I can't name their names, but they are obvious players if you've been paying attention. By this time next year, there will be a couple of other all-in-one mobile VR solutions.

We also don't necessarily have to work with mobile VR for my project. We were simply targeting GearVR for simplicity.
 

Cabal

Member
I can see where this would be upsetting, but based on what is said in the forum post who knows what that means? If you need some sort of online connectivity to a server ala PSN or Steam it would make sense that Facebook traffic would not need to be blocked.

If you have to have a Facebook account to use the hardware, that's a bit different but I can't tell if that's what they are talking about here unless I missed something? (entirely possible cause i'm running on about 3 hours sleep)
 

Krejlooc

Banned
If you need some sort of online connectivity to a server ala PSN or Steam it would make sense that Facebook traffic would not need to be blocked.

That is the problem. You DON'T need an internet connection for this.

This is like requiring an internet connection to use your television.

Virtual Reality is the realm of local content.
 

hohoXD123

Member
So has anyone (on gaf or elsewhere) actually tried blocking facebook to see what happens or are people just going off of this post? I don't have a GearVR so I can't test it myself.

I have the Note 4 version and it works fine after removing everything related to Facebook on my phone.
 

Krejlooc

Banned
I have the Note 4 version and it works fine after removing everything related to Facebook on my phone.

Worth pointing out that the Note 4 version of GearVR is different from the version being talked about in the OP. Different to the point where they can't even run the same applications for the most part.
 

scitek

Member
Never said that. It's just unsurprising. Of course Facebook is going to tell you not to block Facebook for a Facebook-owned product. They want you to be connected to Facebook.

Yeah, I can't say this is something to be reasonably expected at all.
 

A-V-B

Member
That is the problem. You DON'T need an internet connection for this.

This is like requiring an internet connection to use your television.

Virtual Reality is the realm of local content.

Maybe it's poorly worded then? Like, "you don't have to block Facebook, so don't do it unnecessarily"
 
I dunno about that thread title. It's not really fair to extrapolate information from troubleshooting like that. Perhaps the facebook just hosts some dependencies or update files or whatever on their server because why wouldn't they and it could cause bugs if blocked.

That said I am a person who avoids facebook like the plague.
 

Krejlooc

Banned
I dunno about that thread title. It's not really fair to extrapolate information from troubleshooting like that. Perhaps the facebook just hosts some dependencies or update files or whatever on their server because why wouldn't they and it could cause bugs if blocked.

That said I am a person who avoids facebook like the plague.

Again - GearVR comes with an SD card with all that stuff on it. You sideload those things. Previously, you never had to go online to get GearVR working.
 

Cabal

Member
That is the problem. You DON'T need an internet connection for this.

This is like requiring an internet connection to use your television.

Virtual Reality is the realm of local content.

Ok that makes more sense. In that case, I understand the concern.
 

Miracle

Member
I was afraid of this. Really really afraid of this.

If Facebook is mandatory to use OR...oh boy. Sim City x1000 fiasco.
 
Maybe it's poorly worded then? Like, "you don't have to block Facebook, so don't do it unnecessarily"
This is what I took from reading that exchange. I don't know much about Gear VR, but I'd be surprised if they actually made VR apps dependent on the Facebook app somehow.
 
This kind of shit really makes me nervous about VR going forward. VR is not even relevant yet and they're already pulling this kind of shit? I really hope they haven't just hindered adoption of the medium with this.
 

Yokai

Member
It's likely they are tracking dev kits in order to get instant bug reports and dev kit usage statistics.

Iirc console dev kits have some tracking capacity once being registered. Not positive on that though.
 
It's likely they are tracking dev kits in order to get instant bug reports and dev kit usage statistics.

Iirc console dev kits have some tracking capacity once being registered. Not positive on that though.

It's pretty safe to assume that all the things are collecting all the metrics.

GearVR is released, it's available in retail stores.

Don't they still technically call them dev kits though? Or did they recently stop that?
 
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