Oculus acquired Danish eye-tracking technology company The Eye Tribe

The Eye Tribe

But even before the acquisition by Facebook, Eye Tribe was one of the only companies trying to market the technology to consumers as well. The terms of this deal were not made public yet. In 2014, the Eye Tribe started shipping its "Eye Tracking Software Development Kit".

The acquisition also gives the Oculus team access to Eye Tribe's state-of-the-art rendering technology, which selectively renders high-quality graphics depending on what the eyes are looking at. This is why Facebook acquired them for Oculus. The Di Digital publication reported that the Swedish business register lists Facebook became the 100% shareholder of The Eye Tribe on December 15th, and TechCrunch has now confirmed that information here. This is another advantage for Facebook.

The startup has also created a foveated rendering technology, which makes things easier for virtual reality systems as they will only be generating flawless graphics for where the user is looking. Though the details are not out yet, Oculus is likely to be interested in the technology developed by The Eye Tribe to improve its virtual reality systems. In particular, it could help make Oculus' next generation headset (a wireless prototype called the Santa Cruz) more efficient, allowing it to render detailed scenes at higher frame rates without compromising on battery life. The Danish startup has taken a grant from The Danish National Advanced Technology Foundation of $2.3 million.

"We're researching everything. I'm very, very in tune with what's going on in eye tracking research in Oculus". At CES past year, the startup showed off its technology in a VR headset, including its style of "foveated rendering", where only the portion of the screen you're now looking at is rendered in great detail, and a patent-pending biometric authentication technique.

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Eye-tracking technology could also benefit automotive interfaces in self-driving cars and provide advertisers with "gaze analytics" that shows which ads draw consumer's eyes the most.

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