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After two years of supporting an in-house virtual reality movie company, Facebook's Oculus unit said Thursday it will shutter its Story Studio.

In a blog post, Oculus said it would continue to help finance outside production of VR content and will devote $50 million of its previously announced $250 million VR fund to support non-gaming creations.

This helps us turn our internal research, development, and attention towards exciting but unsolved problems in AR and VR hardware and software. We're still absolutely committed to growing the VR film and creative content ecosystem.

The upshot: On the one hand, the move means less internal support for VR production. But another way of looking at it is that Facebook believes the ecosystem is healthy enough that Oculus doesn't have to be the one making the content for its headsets, which is probably necessary for the long-term health of the industry.

Go deeper

Pacific Northwest soon to be ground zero for record-shattering heat

Computer model projection showing the unusually strong heat dome over the Pacific Northwest on Sunday. (PivotalWeather).

A heat wave is bringing unprecedented high temperatures to the Pacific Northwest — a region of the country typically cooled by the ocean, rather than central air conditioning. The heat will begin Friday and last into early next week.

Why it matters: The heat wave will shatter monthly and all-time temperature records in the Pacific Northwest. Some of the records could break the old milestones by several degrees.

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
16 mins ago - Economy & Business

The crypto kings

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

Bitcoin is largely a wash for 2021, but that isn't dimming crypto optimism among venture capitalists or their deep-pocketed limited partners.

Driving the news: Andreessen Horowitz this morning announced that it's raised $2.2 billion for its third crypto-focused fund.

BuzzFeed announces plans to go public via SPAC

Photo: Nicholas Hunt/Getty Images

BuzzFeed said Thursday it plans to go public via a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC). The company is targeting a $1.5 billion valuation upon combining with 890 Fifth Avenue Partners, Inc., a blank-check company.

Driving the news: As part of the transaction, Buzzfeed said it plans to acquire Complex Networks, a lifestyle and entertainment media company, for $300 million in cash and stock.

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