According to an internal source, Tencent just opened over 90 VR-related positions for urgent recruitment via its internal recruitment channels.
The post suggests the new jobs range from core development positions such as software engineering, product management and UI and UX design to supportive positions including marketing and business development. Most are senior positions at the level of team leader or director.
The new recruitment plan echoes Tencent CEO Pony Ma’s recent claims in an interview at China’s ongoing “Two Sessions” government meetings. In the interview, Ma said he thought the technology of VR and Augmented Reality (AR) would become mature within two or three years, and Tencent wouldn’t “say no to the chance to have closer collaboration with other manufacturers to improve the VR market at this early stage”.
“VR hardware is getting mature so now content is more important. Tencent has the broadest VR application scenario for gaming, television and film. We encourage and welcome all hardware manufacturers to collaborate with us,” Ma said in the interview.
The mass recruitment at this time may indicate Tencent is accelerating its VR plans. The company launched its software developer kit VR SDK1.0 last December, which will be compatible with Tencent’s game console, miniStation. Based on Tencent’s December announcement, its VR team will launch a developer kit this month, including its miniStation, a VR HMD (head-mounted display device) and controller. It also plans to launch a consumer version in the latter half of 2016.
Major VR manufacturers around the world are currently experiencing very positive sales performance. The consumer version of HTC Vive launched on February 29th with a USD 799 price tag. It sold over 15,000 units within the first ten minutes. Likewise, the debut of Oculus Rift, selling for USD 599 per unit, saw it sell out in just minutes.
A recent report by investment bank Goldman Sachs suggests that the global VR/AR market will reach USD 80 billion in 2025, among which VR gaming will account for USD 11.6 billion with 216 million users. With this promising market projection, more active players will continue to emerge.