Unity Updates XR Platform to Improve Multi-Platform Offering on 2019.3, Removes Gear VR & Google VR Support
Videogame engine Unity has supported the XR industry from the early days of virtual reality (VR) through to the current crop of augmented reality (AR) hardware. That has included a lot of different hardware support, some of which is still relevant while others less so. This week has seen Unity update its XR platform, removing support for some devices whilst reaffirming official functionality for the latest headsets.
Affecting Unity 2019.3 and beyond, the company has confirmed that Samsung Gear VR and Google VR support will end due to the fact the relative companies have moved their interest away from these products. It’s worth noting Gear VR and Google VR will remain supported in Unity 2018 LTS for developers working on existing projects.
Additionally, built-in OpenVR will be deprecated in 2019.3 because Valve is using Unity’s XR SDK to develop its own OpenVR Unity XR plugin for 2019.3. As such, Unity confirms in its blog that: “Until that plugin is available, built-in support of OpenVR will continue to be functional and available in 2019.3, and we will support our users with any critical fixes.” Just like Gear VR, and Google VR, OpenVR will remain supported in Unity 2018 LTS.
When it comes to what is officially supported in Unity 2019.3 and beyond, it’s now: ARKit, ARCore, Microsoft HoloLens, MagicLeap, Oculus, Windows Mixed Reality and Playstation VR. These are all part of Unity’s “Build once, deploy anywhere” motto, allowing creators to easily deploy content across a range of platforms.
Currently, Unity 2019.2.19 is available as the official download version for projects in development. Or you can test the beta version, Unity 2019.3b, the final edition before the official launch.
Unity is one of the most popular videogame development engines for VR and AR, available for free for beginners and small indie developers. As further improvements to Unity are made, VRFocus will keep you updated.