Oculus co-founder Palmer Luckey leaves Facebook

Oculus founder Palmer Luckey

Oculus owner Facebook has not given a reason for Luckey's departure, but it did release the following statement: "Palmer will be dearly missed".

Luckey's last day at Oculus, the virtual reality startup Facebook FB, -0.17% acquired three years ago, is Friday, a Facebook spokeswoman said.

It said that his "inventive spirit" helped to "kickstart" recent interest in VR and get the industry going. In a statement published by Business Insider, Facebook said, "We're thankful for everything [Luckey] did for Oculus and VR, and we wish him all the best".

Luckey founded Oculus in 2012 when he was just 19 years old, and the company helped spark today's rapidly growing virtual reality industry.

Luckey is regarded as one of the kickstarters of the VR revolution along with John Carmack and indeed a highly successful Kickstarter campaign brought Oculus early acclaim.

Luckey, 24, became a legendary figure after he supposedly created a prototype virtual reality headset out of his parents' garage in 2011.


Facebook has hired a senior ex-Apple employee as head of Oculus VR hardware, while the Rift headset/Oculus Touch bundle recently saw a price cut.

Facebook representatives declined to comment on Upload VR's inquiry as to whether Luckey's departure was voluntary. It also attached him to several unflattering online posts written under the pseudonym NimbleRichMan (posts Luckey later disavowed). Brendan Iribe, Luckey's co-founder, remains at Facebook working in engineering and product development.

Widespread criticism of his involvement with the pro-Trump group prompted Mr Luckey to apologise for the effect the revelation had had on perceptions of Oculus.

Since then, Facebook appointed ex-Xiaomi executive Hugo Barra as Facebook VP of VR - a move which made Oculus more closely integrated with the social network.

In January 2017 software company Zenimax sued Oculus and Facebook over allegations of stealing intellectual property from the software company which was fundamental in building the Rift.

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