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Google creates virtual reality arm, names key exec to run it

CALIFORNIA: Alphabet Inc’s Google has created a virtual reality (VR) computing division and said Clay Bavor, the executive running its product management team, will run the new arm.

A spokesman for Google, Joshua Cruz, confirmed Bavor’s new role on the team, but declined to provide any further details.

According to Bavor’s Twitter profile, he is the vice president of Virtual Reality at Google.

As vice president of product management, Bavor oversaw some of Google’s key apps, including Gmail, Google Drive and Google Docs, his LinkedIn profile showed.

Technology news website Re/code first reported Bavor’s appointment on Tuesday and said his earlier role will now be taken over by Senior Vice President Diane Greene.

Google has been flirting with virtual reality but never quite fully dived into it until now. In May last year, the company announced a partnership with action-camera maker GoPro to enable 360 degree view in virtual reality, using a new technology that Google had developed.

The company said in November its video-sharing site YouTube supported virtual reality video. Viewers could view VR video using a cellphone and Google Cardboard viewer.

Oculus, the virtual reality company Facebook bought in 2014, has started accepting pre-orders for its much-awaited virtual reality headset, Rift, which will ship in Q1.

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