Mozilla as this week unveiled a new open source framework that has been created to help create a virtual reality web that will support desktops PC systems, iPhones, Google Cardboard devices as well as Oculus Rift Dev Kit 2 headsets. Mozilla also says that Android support is “coming soon”.
Mozilla has designed A-Frame to provide an easy way for developers to create virtual reality websites and offers a framework that uses HTML instead of WebGL’s more complex API.
Mozilla explains more about the inspiration behind their new open source A-Frame :
A-Frame is an open source framework for easily creating WebVR experiences with HTML. It is designed and maintained by MozVR (Mozilla’s virtual reality team research team). A-Frame wraps WebGL in HTML custom elements, enabling web developers to create 3D VR scenes that leverage WebGL’s power, without having to learn its complex low-level API. Because WebGL is ubiquitous in modern browsers on desktop and mobile, A-Frame experiences work across desktop, iPhone (Android support coming soon), and Oculus Rift headsets.
We felt WebVR development was too difficult, and sought tools that would make it faster, easier, and more enjoyable. Over the course of 2015 the MozVR team was creating many WebVR experiments with Three.js. To speed up workflows, we began to experiment with custom elements wrapping WebGL. In creating these tools we drew inspiration from both existing declarative VR tools (e.g., JanusVR, GLAM, SceneVR), and from game development best practices. As the tools matured, we felt that they might be able to address what we felt were gaps in the market, particularly around ease of use and “webby-ness”.
For more information on the new A-Frame Mozilla jump over to the Mozilla A-Frame website for plenty of documentation and answers to all your questions.