Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Meta, has shown off virtual reality (VR) headset prototypes to highlight how the business is competing in the battle to make immersive experiences more realistic for people.
Meta’s Reality Labs branch is creating new gear to overcome the current hurdles in the VR area. The prototypes demonstrate that work while indicating that a full-fledged headgear capable of transporting us to a virtual world as lifelike as its physical counterpart has yet to be developed.
In a one-and-a-half-minute video shared on Facebook and Instagram, Zuckerberg demonstrated four new virtual reality headset prototypes created for research reasons.
Butterscotch is the codename for the first in the series. It’s an effort to achieve near-retinal resolution, intending to allow people to read the tiny characters on a virtual vision chart comfortably. This overcomes the difficulty of approaching the 60-pixel-per-degree resolution that Meta thinks to be the minimum for a human retina.
However, the headgear falls short of making the virtual experience as lifelike as the real one. As a result, Meta has created Half Dome prototypes.
The Meta’s Half Dome prototypes, according to Zuckerberg, enable users to concentrate on any item at any distance. This is due to varifocal lenses and eye-tracking technology, which allows the device to shift its focus based on whatever virtual item a user wishes to gaze at.
Half Dome prototypes, like Butterscotch, are currently incapable of becoming a commercial gadget.
“We also need to rectify optical imperfections in software in such a way that they are unnoticeable to the human eye,” Zuckerberg writes.
Starburst is the codename for Meta’s Reality Labs’ next prototype. It’s a high-definition virtual reality system.
“Nature is typically 10 to 100 times brighter than contemporary HDTVs and high-end displays, and we need those colors to be just as vivid to feel authentic,” adds Zuckerberg.
The headgear is, however, cumbersome to wear and has components such as outdoor fans, making it nothing like a standard VR headset.
Despite this, Zuckerberg claims that the purpose of prototyping devices like Starburst is to put all of the technologies under development into a gadget that is “lighter and smaller than anything that presently exists.”
Holocake 2 takes a step in the right way. It’s a “functioning experimental gadget” with holographic displays that can use to play PC VR experiences without needing extra gear.
Regardless, the headset is not intended for commercial use.
“We still have a long way to go,” Zuckerberg emphasizes.
The Meta Quest 2 is the company’s most recent commercial VR headset. However, that model lacks the capabilities and enhancements the Menlo Park, a California-based startup, wants to include to improve its virtual reality products. As a result, continuing prototyping is anticipated to aid in developing improved hardware shortly.
Meta is developing hardware and software to penetrate the professional-grade VR industry and create consumer-grade VR experiences. Testing several prototypes is also likely to benefit the organization in this regard.
Apple and Google, in addition to Meta, are said to be working on native VR products. Early steps by Facebook’s parent company, on the other hand, are likely to provide it with an advantage over the competition.