The Chief Executive Officer of Meta, Mark Zuckerberg, Wednesday launched the new improved Meta virtual reality headset, the Quest 3, just as he outlined innovations by the technology company as it strives to remain ahead of its peers.
Speaking at the Meta Connect event at the company’s head office at Menlo Park, California, he pointed out that the Quest 3, offers improved performance, immersive new mixed-reality features and a sleeker, more comfortable design.
With its cost put at $499 and shipping expected to commence from October 10, Zuckerberg said: “We are incredibly proud to introduce Quest 3.
Quest 3 is the most powerful headset that we have ever shipped and it allows you to blend the digital and the physical world together. You can navigate it with your hands or with brand new precision control designed for work or games. It completely stands alone with a battery pack and nothing that can break your head. Quest 3 understands your space and so you can play with the world around you.”
Zuckerberg also introduced an AI personal assistant people could interact with using any of Meta’s messaging apps — along with a smattering of AI characters he called “a bit more fun,” such as “Max the sous chef,” who can help come up with ideas for dinner, or Lily, a “personal editor and writing partner.”
According to him, “These are just a few we have trained, there are a lot more coming.”
He also introduced the next version of Meta’s Ray Ban Stories smart glasses, which let people record video or photos, livestream, listen to music and interact with the Meta AI assistant.
“Smart glasses are the ideal form factor for you to let an AI assistant see what you are seeing and hear what you are hearing,” Zuckerberg said. The glasses will launch Oct. 17 and cost $299.
Speaking further, he told participants at the conference: “We have a whole lot of new experiences. We have been on it for a while and I am really very excited to show you what we have been building. At Meta, we are focused on building the future of human connections.
“What that means is that we build products to help people connect with friends, colleagues, families and people we care about, anywhere in the world we actually are. We do this because we believe that strengthens our relationship, helps us bond together, improves our learning, gives us more opportunity.
“One of life’s greatest joy is getting to go out, be active and enjoy. But at same time, over the last few decades our industry has been building this incredible digital world. It is funny when people say the digital world is not the real world. Increasingly, the real world is the combination of the physical world that we have and the digital world that we are building.
“I think one of the most interesting questions for our industry over the coming decades is going to be how do we unify these experiences – the physicality that we have with this vibrant digital world to have something better than what we have today? Not too far from now, you are going to walk into a room and there will be many holograms of digital things as well as physical objects. So, this is a quick glimpse of the future of how this idea of the physical and the digital coming together to create the idea that is called the metaverse.
“Mixed reality allows you to bring digital objects into the physical world; advances in artificial intelligence (AI) allows us to create different AIs that help us to accomplish different things and smart glasses eventually allow us to bring all of these together. Now, the big point of these innovations is about making sure that these technologies are accessible to everyone.
“Sometimes we innovate and release some of the things that have never been seen, but sometimes we innovate by taking something that is awesome and super-expensive and making it affordable for everyone. Innovations that bring the future to millions and billions of people is what we do.”