Meta’s Progress in Augmented and Virtual Reality


imageThis is an abbreviated version of Andrew Bosworth’s blog post.

We believe 2022 will be remembered as a year when foundational pieces of technology that power our vision for the future first found their way into the hands of developers and users.This OctoberMeta shipped some MetaQuestPro: Mixed reality is an important part of the journey to full augmented reality devices, and eye and face tracking are vital parts of the technology stack required for AR and VR devices to reach their full potential.Quest Pro also brought major advancements in rendering and optics that will push VR hardware forward for the long haul.

The long-term value of these technologies will come from how they are adopted by the ecosystem of developers, makers and builders that has formed around these devices.That’s why I’m extremely proud that we brought Quest Pro to market when we did, because the sooner people can start working with new technology like this, the faster its full value and potential can be unlocked.We will live with the benefits of this work for decades to come.

Introducing Meta Reality: Mixed Reality is more than just a video feed

Mixed reality is about much more than just displaying a live video feed of your surroundings in the headset.To work properly, the headset needs to understand your room as a 3D space, recognize the surfaces and objects around you, and know how they can interact with digital objects.It requires technologies such as Spatial Anchors, which allow virtual things to occupy fixed spaces in the physical world, as well as Scene Understanding for virtually reconstructing physical spaces, as well as Stereoscopic Color Passthrough, to capture and accurately display the physical world in the headset with a sense of depth for greater comfort.

Meta Reality, our mixed reality system, combines all of these technologies and more into one system for developers to build.

Unlock advanced experiences with Eye and Face Tracking

Eye and face tracking has a wealth of possibilities, both today and far into the future.Currently, eye and face tracking delivers more expressive avatars on Meta Quest Pro, making people’s digital selves more closely match their facial expressions in the real world.This is one of many steps we are taking to create an avatar system that can improve the quality of communication, expression and connection in virtual spaces – and we will be able to share much more about this in 2023.

But the longer-term possibilities unlocked by eye and face tracking technology go far beyond avatars.Our vision for true AR glasses requires years of progress to make our devices slimmer, lighter, faster and more powerful, while consuming much less battery power and generating much less heat.Big efficiency gains will be made when devices are smart enough to display only the highest resolution images in the small area that a user is actually looking at.We first demonstrated this capability in October thanks to the eye-tracking technology on Quest Pro, and it will drive advancements in VR and AR for years to come.

Introducing Infinite Rendering: Measuring Visual Quality in VR

The visual quality of a VR device depends on a range of technologies beyond the typical metrics we’ve used when describing the displays on a computer, TV or phone.In addition to the screen resolution, factors such as system resolution, sharpness, contrast and color gamut each play an important role.

So is the optical stack itself, where lenses, coatings and films each make a huge difference.We recently shared more details on how each of these comes together Meta’s infinite view system for VR optics, the product of years of investment in research and development for VR and AR technologies.That R&D will continue to pay off well into the future, and earlier this year we released some of the research prototypes that we built to showcase these next-generation display technologies.

Support of the Virtual World-Building Community

We also saw the start of a new community of creators on our platforms: the Virtual World Builders.It’s not often you witness an entirely new way of self-expression and community-building on a platform, and the ways creators worked their magic Horizon worlds this year was a thing to behold.We’re going to spend 2023 helping this community thrive.

Meta is far from the only company working to push the boundaries here, and we expect new competitors to join us next year to build for AR and VR.As new devices enter the market, we believe our industry will enter a new era of growth and competition that will bring tremendous benefits to users and the developer community.And Meta will have its own new devices to share, including the successor to Meta Quest 2, our best-selling VR device of all time.

You’re gonna love it.And you’re sure to love the Meta Quest Gaming Showcase in the spring where we’ll once again be showing off some of the great new games to come in the coming year.

Read The full message from Andrew Bosworth..

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