Four new virtual reality headsets for Meta by 2024

Meta’s schedule seems busy. Mark Zuckerberg’s company, which recently changed its name to Meta to reflect its metaverse-focused strategy, plans to release four new VR headsets by 2024, according to The Information. A resolutely aggressive schedule that matches Mark Zuckerberg’s desire to disseminate his vision of virtual reality.

A line of high-end helmets

The first helmet is known as “Project Cambria”, on which Facebook revealed some details in October 2021. It should be a mixed reality headset capable of both virtual reality (immersion in a synthetic environment) and augmented reality (we see the world around us, increased by virtual objects). This top-of-the-range helmet should incorporate some advanced technologies intended to eventually integrate, when their price has dropped, the more affordable helmets of the Quest range. This helmet, which is known internally as the Arcata, is expected to be released in September, according to The Information. Then, a second version, currently called Funston, should see the light of day in 2024.

Cambria is expected to be priced around $799, well above the $300-$400 Quests cost today. The image quality should be sufficient for reading text and typing emails or lines of code in a virtual reality environment.

At the operating system level, a homemade version of Android should be embedded in the device. The headset’s processing power should match that of a low-end laptop. The price should be justified in particular by a more powerful battery and sensors that can track the eyes and facial expressions in order to reproduce them on the user’s avatar.

The other two headsets are versions of Quest internally dubbed Stinson and Cardiff. These helmets should be marketed in 2023 and 2024.

Considerable investments

At the same time, Meta is also working on augmented reality glasses. Known under the name of Nazaré, a first model should see the light of day in 2024. Then a second version, lighter and more efficient in 2026, and a third version in 2028. Other glasses, less expensive, called Hypernova, should also to be launched in 2024. These will be connected to a smartphone and will have a small screen that can display notifications. It could be an evolution of the Ray-Ban Stories, which are marketed in Franceand a second version of which is also planned.

Nazaré and Hypernova glasses must be marketed with a connected bracelet to serve as an interface. The promise of this bracelet is that its wearer can interact with the glasses thanks to the movements of their fingers, without the need for a touch screen or a keyboard.

The roadmap is therefore very busy for Meta, which spent $3 billion in the first quarter of 2022 in virtual and augmented reality. Investments that respond to the hardware strategy set by Mark Zuckerberg, but whose ambitions could be hampered by pressure from certain shareholders.

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Four new virtual reality headsets for Meta by 2024

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