Image: Beat Games

Facebook said Tuesday in a blog post that its virtual reality unit is buying Beat Games, the company behind Beat Saber, one of the most popular games for its Oculus devices.

Why it matters: The move comes as a sign that Facebook continues to believe in — and put money into — VR even as the industry has slowed more than some had hoped.

Between the lines: Some wonder whether Facebook will draw legal challenges that the small, independent Beat Games did not. Troubles could include the use of copyrighted music or use of the terms "saber" and "lightsaber," given Disney is not known for liking others to use its intellectual property.

  • There's also the question of how long Facebook will be committed to Beat Saber for non-Oculus platforms, though Facebook said it plans to continue developing for all VR devices it currently supports.

What's next: Facebook suggested more deals may follow. "We’re exploring many ways to accelerate VR, and we think next year is going to be an incredible one of VR game launches and announcements. We are thrilled to have Beat Games join our team. This is just the beginning," the tech giant said in the blog post.

Go deeper: Facebook charts a path toward a more social virtual reality

Go deeper

Mike Allen, author of AM
9 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Trump sees court fight as virus respite

Spotted at Trump's rally last night at Harrisburg International Airport in Middletown, Pa. Photo: Joshua Roberts/Reuters

At a rally in Pennsylvania last night, President Trump basked in adulation for Judge Amy Coney Barrett and said: "She should be running for president!"

Why it matters: She might as well be. The Trump campaign is thrilled to be talking about something besides the president's handling of COVID, and is going all-in to amp up the court conversation.

Mike Allen, author of AM
10 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Democrats feel boxed in on strategy for Barrett confirmation fight

Photo: Chen Mengtong/China News Service via Getty Images

Democrats privately fear that going too hard on Judge Amy Coney Barrett in her confirmation hearings could wind up backfiring, if senators are perceived as being nasty to an accomplished woman.

Driving the news: Yesterday afternoon, NBC posted video of Coney Barrett outside her house in South Bend, Ind., loading four of her seven children — two of the seven adopted from Haiti, and another with Down Syndrome — into her Honda Odyssey minivan, then driving them all to her Air Force ride to Washington. "Good luck, Democrats," a Republican tweeted.

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 10 a.m. ET: 32,881,747 — Total deaths: 994,821 — Total recoveries: 22,758,171Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 10 a.m. ET: 7,079,909 — Total deaths: 204,503 — Total recoveries: 2,750,459 — Total tests: 100,492,536Map.
  3. States: New York daily cases top 1,000 for first time since June — U.S. reports over 55,000 new coronavirus cases.
  4. Health: The long-term pain of the mental health pandemicFewer than 10% of Americans have coronavirus antibodies.
  5. Business: Millions start new businesses in time of coronavirus.
  6. Education: Summer college enrollment offers a glimpse of COVID-19's effect.