The meta pulls out all the stops to reboot his metaverse

It’s an understatement to say that Meta’s Connect 2022 event was anticipated. And with it the release of the Quest Pro virtual reality headset. While the widely-revealed product wasn’t a surprise, Meta’s (ex-Facebook) focus on professional applications of the new hardware was disappointing, especially in terms of the hardware needed to get them. If the American giant has made a bunch of announcements (including new partnerships with Microsoft, Adobe, Zoom and others), its most ambitious projects are still promising prototypes.

Meta first introduced its Meta Quest Pro headset, built from the ground up for businesses and professionals. If the improved visual clarity and auto-tracking controllers can be used just as well to enhance your gameplay Defeat SaberInstead, Meta hopes to attract many business customers to the metaverse for the first time.

Aside from Quest Pro, the longest part of the Meta Connect 2022 presentation focused on the company’s efforts to turn its already derided Horizon Worlds offering into a must-see for networking, co-op, and entertainment in the metaverse. Meta boss Mark Zuckerberg promised updates during this event in one of the posts he made in response to negative feedback about Horizon Worlds’ simple graphics. And his company delivered on its promise.

Part of Microsoft and Zoom

Not only do avatars in virtual worlds gain autonomy, but they also benefit from an entirely new framework for collaboration in the form of Horizon Workrooms. These co-working spaces are at the heart of the company’s business strategy, providing a place where VR headset wearers and people just sitting at a table, or even using their smartphone can come together to chat, view 3D models , to cooperate and work.

Partners in this particular announcement include Microsoft, which will support Breakout Rooms through Teams integrations, and Zoom, which will soon allow users to appear as their Meta Avatars in Zoom meetings.

In the long term, Meta hopes that features like Magic Rooms (mixed reality spaces where cross-platform collaboration will enable even greater meetings), virtual whiteboards (with support for Quest Pro pen controllers), and features others will convince the business world that the Metaverse is indeed the best place to host their next meeting.

In addition to the collaborations with Microsoft and Zoom mentioned and seen above, Meta has also announced partnerships with several other technology brands. These include a partnership with Accenture, which will help expand the Meta Quest and Horizon Worlds ecosystems through that company’s ISV program; a deal that will bring Autodesk’s 3D modeling technology to Meta Quest Pro; and plans with Adobe to introduce its Substance 3D modeling software in Meta Quest Pro and Quest 2 next year.

Pro oriented applications

To make it easier for businesses to manage all the hardware, applications and services these deployments will require, Meta has announced Meta Quest for Business, a “bundled subscription for Meta Quest Pro and Meta Quest 2 that includes the essential management, both device and application management, premium support and more.” The company hopes that this unique offering, which includes contributions from some of the third-party vendors mentioned above, will ease customers’ path to the metaverse.

As usual, Meta closed its event with a segment where it presents upcoming projects. This year’s list of ambitions focuses on two main areas: controlling augmented reality and bringing real-world objects and people into the metaverse. Mark Zuckerberg himself showed off a new augmented reality headset prototype that he says will evolve into a product that users can wear anywhere.

Combined with AI-based learning technologies, the result is a wrist-worn system that can adapt to any user to help them control augmented and virtual reality content with little more than a thought. During the presentation, the company demonstrated impressive interactions with augmented reality applications and basic games controlled by wristbands.

Slower start than expected for Meta

Meta also shared some of the ways it hopes to bring its new metaverse closer to the real world. These included Meta’s Neural Radiation Field 3D scanning technology, which can use something as simple as a smartphone camera (and significant AI processing in the background) to create convincing 3D renderings of objects in the metaverse. The company also introduced a reverse rendering technique that achieves a similar result by applying real-world physics to the created object.

Finally, the social networking giant introduced the latest version (2.0, to be exact) of Avatars Codec. These ultra-realistic metaverse avatars were sometimes hard to distinguish from the live video of the subject used to create them, and should silence any naysayers if they ever start populating the metaverse.

That said, even Meta acknowledges that the next metaverse population boom may not happen for several years. However, the company also introduced another swipe technology based on the phone, which already allows the creation of an avatar that has reached most of the road in just a few hours. No timeline was mentioned for when either of these technologies might be made available to the public.


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