WebVR is an in-development open standard that aims to define how browsers should communicate with VR hardware, allowing developers to create VR experiences that are served directly from the web. With Apple’s newly public interest in VR, developers from the company have join the W3C WebVR Community Group to have a say in the development of the WebVR standard.
Founded in 1994, W3C is a standards organization focused on web technologies. The organization helps to form, maintain, and evolve foundational web tech like HTML and CSS, and does so by fostering communication and consensus among stakeholders. To achieve that, W3C hosts online groups to get developers talking to one another and deciding what a standard should look like and how it should work.
Among those groups is the WebVR Community Group, chaired by Mozilla’s Chris Van Wiemeersch and Google’s Brandon Jones, both of which have played pioneering roles in the development of WebVR.
The group’s 152 members—representing other major companies, like Microsoft, Intel, and Samsung—are now joined for the first time publicly by three developers from Apple who are ostensibly interested in influencing the future of the WebVR standard.
Aside from showing Apple’s growing interest in VR, it could be the first step toward eventual support for WebVR in the Safari browser; so far Safari is the only major browser to not have committed to at least some level of WebVR support. At any rate, being in the group will provide the developers with insight and influence in the development of VR on the web.
The three Apple developers now in the group are Brandel Zachernuk, a Senior Front-end Developer (according to his LinkedIn profile); David Singer, a near 30 year veteran of the company (also according to LinkedIn); and Dean Jackson, one of two Editors on the widely supported WebGL standard.
Singer’s LinkedIn says that he’s part of Apple’s Multimedia and Software Standards group, with an extensive history with various file formats as the principal representative to MPEG, JPEG, 3GPP, and more.
Zachernuk describes himself as a VR UX Enthusiast, and has prototyped an impressive virtual reality word processor built entirely in the browser running on an HTC Vive.