Geekwire: Oculus will need somewhere to put all those people, and the real estate and virtual reality communities are buzzing about a massive expansion for Oculus in the Seattle area. Real estate sources tell GeekWire that Oculus is looking around for 200,000 square feet of research and development space in Redmond. Additionally, the company is rumored to be in the market for a big chunk of office space — possibly as much as 500,000 to 1 million square feet — in the Seattle area, according to three real estate sources not involved in Oculus’ search.
An Oculus spokesperson declined to discuss the company’s future plans or real estate needs in the Seattle area, but did provide the following statement: “We recently shared our vision to get 1 billion people into VR, and we’re growing the Oculus team in Seattle to help make that happen. We’re excited about the talent and growth in Seattle, and welcome engineering, product, and hardware experts who want to join us!”
Oculus’ job site lists 239 open positions worldwide, and Redmond, where its long-term research efforts as well as hardware and other operations are focused, accounts for 117 of those openings. In Seattle, Oculus has another six openings. Menlo Park, where Oculus is headquartered, has the second most job postings at 71.
Seattle’s reputation as a tech hub is no secret, but beyond the giants of Amazon and Microsoft, and the title of cloud capital, the Seattle area is becoming a hot bed for virtual, augmented, mixed — and every other kind of tech-enhanced reality. Microsoft has the high-end HoloLens headset, which recently expanded to 29 new countries. Valve, which works with HTC on the Vive headset, is based in Redmond’s neighbor of Bellevue, Wash. HTC’s Creative Labs offices are in Seattle’s Pioneer Square neighborhood. Earlier this year GeekWire reported that Amazon Web Service is building a team focused on mixed reality.