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Oculus takes aim at mainstream with inexpensive gear, video

Virtual reality is taking a few steps closer to the mainstream with Samsung unveiling a headset that brings the technology to its latest smartphones at half the price of its previous model, Facebook launching support for 360-degree video, and online video services like Netflix and Hulu jumping into the format.

The announcements at a developers conference in Los Angeles for virtual reality technology company Oculus represent attempts to push the platform beyond a video-gamer-focused niche.

Facebook Inc. CEO Mark Zuckerberg, who cut a deal to buy Oculus for $2 billion last year, told some 1,500 conference attendees Thursday that virtual reality is "the next logical...