In line with last year’s Meta Connect, which introduced the new branding of Facebook as “Meta” and launched a new focus on the metaverse, this year’s conference was all about VR.
Here are the biggest announcements:
The New Meta Quest Pro
Pushing technical boundaries to their limit, the new Meta Quest Pro is shipping out on October 25th at a whopping price tag of $1,499.
The Meta Quest Pro utilizes a Qualcomm Snapdragon XR2+ chipset and 1800×1920 per-eye mini-LED displays. The headset comes with 12 GB of RAM onboard and 256 GB of storage.
Featuring a full-color passthrough for “mixed reality” experiences, the Quest pro uses four cameras on the outside of the device to display the space outside of the headset, overlaying digital content onto the user’s real-world environment.
All set with eye-tracking capabilities, the new “pancakes” lenses also means a reduced size, with a 40% thinner display stack compared with the Quest 2.
The only downside to the new VR device, other than its price tag, is its battery life, which only lasts for about 1-2 hours, a disadvantage which will likely interfere with its users’ immersion.
A Microsoft Partnership
Meta Quest Pro users will now be able to access Windows apps, a Teams integration, Xbox Cloud Gaming, and ‘progressive web app versions’ of Microsoft 365 tools like Word, Excel, Powerpoint and Outlook through their headsets.
“Now, you can connect, share and collaborate as though you are together in person,” Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella explained.
Horizon Workrooms, Meta’s VR space for collaboration, will also connect with Teams, he added — allowing people to join a Teams meeting directly from Workrooms.
Workplace VR Integration
Meta has a new vision for VR, a place where people can not only game, but also work together in real-time. In Zuckerberg’s words: “There’s an opportunity for a VR headset designed from the ground up to be great for work, as well as playing games and hanging out.”
With 60,000 Quest 2 headsets deployed to large-scale corporations as part of a partnership with Accenture, the company is also building a “Meta Quest for Business” subscription product next year.
Exercise in VR
Meta is releasing an exercise bundle with the new headset, partnering with a number of VR fitness apps like Supernatural.
For an extra $69.99, users will also get a wipeable facial interface, wrist straps and adjustable knuckle straps.
An NBCUniversal Partnership
Peacock, a streaming app, is also coming to Quest Pro.
Meta also said that it will develop experiences around IP like “The Office,” Universal Monsters, DreamWorks, Blumhouse and Halloween Horror Nights.
Originally torso figures, Horizon World avatars will now have legs!
Horizon Worlds Reels
Users playing Meta’s Horizon Worlds can now boast about it to their friends. With the new update, users can share their Horizon Worlds videos to Facebook and Instagram Reels.
The company, which is known to be hesitant about sharing revenue figures, revealed that its Quest Store has made over $1.5 billion on sales of games and apps.
Meta also announced that more than one-third of the company’s 400 Quest titles have grossed more than $1 million in sales, with 33 titles having surpassed $10 million in gross revenue.
The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners topped the list, surpassing $50 million in revenue on Quest, followed by Resident Evil, which made $2 million in its first 24 hours.
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