Hugo Barra Joins Facebook’s Oculus VR as VP

After making news since announcing his exit from Xiaomi as the company’s International Head, Hugo Barra has been announced as the new face of Facebook’s Virtual Reality push, including its Oculus team.

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In a Facebook post on Thursday, Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook announced that Hugo Barra will be joining the VR team at Facebook.

Barra is set to leave Xiaomi in February and will be joining Facebook as VP of Virtual Reality soon thereafter.

“I’m excited that Hugo Barra is joining Facebook to lead all of our virtual reality efforts, including our Oculus team. I’ve known Hugo for a long time, starting when he helped develop the Android operating system to the last few years he’s worked at Xiaomi in Beijing bringing innovative devices to millions of people,” Mark Zuckerberg wrote.

Barra is leaving Xiaomi after three years and a half years, citing homesickness and health concerns. He has been the face of the Chinese smartphone company globally and has led the brand to immense success worldwide.

“Joining Facebook as VP of virtual reality (VPVR!) to lead Team Oculus. So excited!” Hugo Barra tweeted.

The former Google Android Vice President was poached by Xiaomi back in 2013, a move which gave the Chinese smartphone company the much-needed legitimacy while trying to find its footing in the international market.

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“Hugo shares my belief that virtual and augmented reality will be the next major computing platform. Hugo is going to help build that future, and I’m looking forward to having him on our team,” Zuckerberg added.

One of his primary responsibilities since joining Xiaomi has been to increase its global market presence and Barra has overseen the company’s expansion into more than 20 countries including Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia, Russia, Mexico, Poland and India.

The 40-year-old computing wizard is going to officially step down from his role at the company in February, after the Chinese New Year celebration on January 28, but will remain with Xiaomi as an advisor indefinitely.

Barra, who has previously also worked at Google’s Android team, now faces a bigger challenge as he’s the new face to drive Facebook’s VR efforts and bring it out to be the next big thing in the tech industry.

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