The XR Week Peek (2023.10.02): Meta Quest 3 launched, Vive Final Tracker leaked, and extra!

Welcome to this new version of the XR Week Peek, which this week might be a bit particular as a result of I’ll summarize right here what occurred in the course of the Meta Join, the occasion throughout which Mark Zuckerberg launched the Quest 3, the Ray-Ban Meta smartglasses, and new methods for knowledge harvest… cough cough I imply, new AI companies. I used to be used to creating a devoted roundup for the Meta Join yearly, however this yr it has been so disappointing that I don’t suppose it deserves its personal article 😐
 However there received’t be solely Meta: after the massive intro concerning the Meta Join, you’ll discover different juicy information ready for you.
 Earlier than delving into the information, I simply wish to inform you that I really feel nice as a result of an article of mine has been published on Variety, in its VIP+ part. It’s my first time in such an necessary journal and I’m extremely completely satisfied about it!

Prime information of the week

(Picture by Meta)

Meta launched Quest 3

The principle piece of stories of the week is in fact the launch of the Meta Quest 3 on the Meta Join. Actually, the launch second has been a bit underwhelming as a result of Zuck determined to focus the keynote extra on AI than on Quest 3, however for us within the VR subject, this has been crucial second.
 The headset didn’t include many surprises and these have been the specs:

  • Decision (per-eye): 2064 x 2208
  • Show Sort: LCD
  • Refresh Fee: 120Hz
  • Lens kind: Pancake
  • Processor: Snapdragon XR2 Gen2
  • RAM: 8GB
  • Battery Life: 2–3 hours
  • Area of View: 110° horizontal, 96° vertical
  • IPD Modify: hardware-based. Eye aid can also be supported
  • Audio: built-in
  • Weight: 509g
  • Storage: 128GB or 512GB
  • Connectivity: USB, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi
  • Monitoring: inside-out
  • Depth sensor: obtainable
  • Combined Actuality: full-RGB cameras for coloration 18 PPD passthrough

The preorders for the gadget are already open, with the 128 GB SKU costing $499 and the 512GB SKU $649. Transport will begin on October, tenth.
 Studying the evaluations from crucial magazines, I’ve realized that the killer characteristic of this headset is the brand new XR2 Gen2 chipset. In line with all reviewers, it’s the new horsepower that’s going to make this headset very fascinating. XR2 Gen2 has 2.6x the GPU energy of the earlier mannequin, and the comparability of the assorted video games of their earlier than vs. after variations is spectacular. Lastly with this chipset, video games don’t seem simply as flat colours anymore, however some real-time lighting turns into attainable. Which means that all video games are going to look higher, including higher lighting, higher environments, and extra enemies per single scene. Pair this with the brand new show and lenses, that are going so as to add visible readability, and also you receive an incredible combine to present customers a brand new and higher expertise.
 The nice information for Meta is that since it’s a robust accomplice with Qualcomm, it can have solely the chipset for round 6 months, so opponents that use the identical system can solely arrive in 2024.
 The brand new controller, the Contact Plus, appears additionally to trace very properly, and has the fascinating characteristic that they’ve higher monitoring performances than Quest 2 ones across the torso of the participant. To try this, they sacrifice the monitoring high quality when the palms are above the top of the consumer, a state of affairs that’s anyway fairly uncommon. That is additionally as a result of the cameras of the headset are largely pointed in the direction of the decrease area… and for a superb motive. In a future replace, Meta will use the monitoring cameras to trace the complete physique of the consumer and present an honest estimation of the pose of the torso, the elbows, and the arms, and a simulated pose for the legs. Sure, the Quest 3 will be capable to present some kind of very tough full-body monitoring, which is nice for social VR experiences.
 The final huge characteristic is in fact combined actuality: Zuckerberg outlined the Quest 3 as the primary client combined actuality headset. I’m an enormous fan of passthrough AR, and the truth that the reviewers highlighted how the standard of this passthrough is excessive, makes me excited. However truthfully talking, I believe nobody cares about it: customers have no idea what MR is and what its objective is, and Meta confirmed no compelling use circumstances in the course of the Join. So I believe that to start with, MR might be largely ineffective for this gadget. And I’m not the one one fascinated by it: the god John Carmack has expressed an analogous opinion on X/Twitter, saying that in his opinion, Quest 3 ought to focus fully on the magic of VR, as a result of there isn’t a actual use for passthrough AR at this second, no less than on the buyer aspect.

Extra information (A very powerful takeaways from Meta Join 2023)
More info (Meta Quest 3 release date and price)
More info (Hands on Quest 3 — Road To VR)
More info (Hands on Quest 3 — Upload VR)
More info (Hands on Quest 3 — TESTED)
More info (Quest 3 specs)
More info (Quest 3 specs VS other headsets)
More info (Qualcomm Snapdragon XR2Gen2 and its power)
More info (Other headsets using XR2Gen2 are coming in 2024)
More info (Quest 3’s higher rendering resolution)
More info (Quest 3’s graphics upgrade)
More info (Quest 3 Touch Plus controllers)
More info (Quest 3 full body tracking)
More info (John Carmack on Mixed Reality)

Different related information

(Picture by Lex Fridman)

Zuck’s interview as a Codec Avatar reignites curiosity within the metaverse

There’s one factor that made a much bigger influence than the entire Meta Join and Meta’s adverts: the interview that Mark Zuckerberg had with Lex Fridman in VR, through a Quest Professional, the place each of them had been represented by a Codec Avatar, that may be a hyper-realistic avatar from Meta’s R&D.
 Mark Zuckerberg’s “First Interview In The Metaverse” with Lex Fridman has been a really well-thought communication transfer. As an alternative of displaying folks how the “metaverse” is now with very tough pictures (that simply turn into memes) or the way it could also be sooner or later with some fluffy movies, Zuck has used the most effective applied sciences from the Meta R&D division: Meta’s Codec Avatars. Codec Avatars are usually not solely spectacular as a result of they’re strikingly much like an actual particular person, however they’re additionally one thing that individuals can instantly grasp by watching a video on YouTube. They don’t seem to be an summary idea like “metaverse”, however they’re a really sensible and comprehensible characteristic, with a really clear use case: “connecting distant folks”. In reality, the feedback to this podcast on Twitter and YouTube have all been enthusiastic, and a few commenters turned believers in Meta’s imaginative and prescient. I had by no means seen comparable optimistic feedback in the direction of Meta for a really very long time. And this isn’t useful only for Meta, however for all our business.
 As knowledgeable in VR, I’ve in fact so as to add that there are two huge issues with these Meta Avatars. The primary is that they nonetheless fall into the “uncanny valley” and look a bit disturbing as a result of their faces don’t transfer precisely like an actual particular person. They’re very life like, however watching the video, my mind had a really detrimental adversion towards it, as a result of it began discovering these folks “bizarre to look at”. Fixing this drawback would require quite a lot of effort from Meta.
 The second drawback is that this know-how remains to be an R&D one, and it requires a really costly and sophisticated setup to carry out the scan of the individuals. The group engaged on it says that this turning into a product launched to customers requires “a couple of miracles” to occur, that means that years of labor are nonetheless essential to finalize it. So whereas the know-how is superb, it’s necessary we additionally tune our expectations: this can be a imaginative and prescient of the longer term, not of the current of XR.
 However at the moment, it has already been helpful to make some jaws drop.

More info

Quest 3 is coming with a couple of equipment

In fact, the Quest 3 has been introduced along with a set of fascinating equipment, like:

  • A charging dock ($130) that may recharge additionally the batteries of the controllers wirelessly
  • An Elite Strap ($70) which can additionally come along with an additional battery ($130). I simply hope that this one doesn’t break simply just like the earlier model
  • A carrying case ($70), overpriced as standard
  • A Silicone Facial Interface ($40), ideally suited to do health
  • Lively Straps for Contact Plus Controllers ($40) that are going to extend the grip of the controllers
  • VR Prescription Lenses ($50), manufactured by Zenni
  • Quest-branded mannequin of Razer’s noise-cancelling Hammerhead HyperSpeed earbuds (worth nonetheless unannounced)
  • Blue and orange-colored units of facial interface and head strap ($50). That is my favourite accent as a result of it lastly helps you to customise the feel and appear of the Quest, which due to this abandons the standard white and black colours to turn into colourful and joyful. I might have liked this to return as a typical possibility for the gadget.

More info (Quest 3 Accessories)
More info (Quest 3 colored headstrap)
More info (Razer Hammerhead earbuds)

Some content material was introduced for Quest 3, however not AAA video games

One of many disappointing bits of the Meta Join was the half concerning the new upcoming content material for Quest 3. Meta introduced some minor upcoming video games, however has not unveiled any new huge AAA productions for Quest 3, nor has given any additional updates on GTA San Andreas VR. Moreover, the corporate has revealed to Add VR that there might be no content material unique for Quest 3 (i.e. not additionally obtainable on Quest 2) till 2024. This helps in growing the shelf lifetime of Quest 2 however prevents studios from launching upgraded variations of their video games particular for the brand new headset.
 The principle necessary information relating to video games has been IMHO:

  • The launch of Roblox on Quest Retailer. Roblox was already on App Lab, the place it had a couple of million downloads, and now’s going to be obtainable on the official Quest retailer
  • Asgard’s Wrath 2, approaching Quest Retailer on December fifteenth, 2023. The sport might be free for all Quest 3 purchasers
  • Lego Bricktales, a brand new mixed-reality recreation made by Meta in collaboration with Lego
  • The gameplay preview of Murderer’s Creed Nexus VR, which confirmed the extent of visible high quality that’s attainable with Quest 3

Usually Meta has revealed that 100 new video games are coming to Quest Retailer, and no less than half of them may have combined actuality options.

Meta has additionally revealed that Xbox Recreation Cross Final is coming to Quest in December. Because of Xbox Cloud Gaming, folks will be capable to play Xbox video games on an enormous display in entrance of their eyes. That is very cool, but it surely additionally a bit worries me as a result of I would like that individuals in a VR headset play VR content material and never flatscreen content material.
 Final however not least, Meta goes to launch Augments for Quest 3. Augments are 3D widgets you possibly can add to your room in combined actuality, and they are often simply beautifications, like trophies from Beat Saber, or little utilities, like just a little digital display that exhibits to you Instagram reels. In case you have ever used HoloLens, they’re precisely just like the HoloLens widgets.

More info (Roblox on the Quest Store)
More info (All the new games announced during the Meta Connect)
More info (Quest Store to have 100 new pieces of content)
More info (No Quest 3 exclusive games in 2023)
More info (Asgard’s Wrath 2)
More info (Lego Bricktales)
More info (Augments)
More info (Bam!)
More info (Assassin’s Creed Nexus VR)
More info (XBox cloud gaming on Quest)

Meta Quest Retailer had 2+ Billions of lifetime income

Speaking about content material, Meta has introduced that its Meta Quest Retailer had greater than $2B+ of complete income in its lifetime. It is a exceptional lead to a distinct segment like digital actuality. However Street To VR has analyzed the information and seen that if we map all these bulletins about lifetime revenues alongside these years, we see that spending on Quest Retailer has been dramatically decreased this yr. It is a large drawback for Meta, which subsidizes {hardware} with software program gross sales. I believe Meta hopes to reinvigorate the gross sales with the brand new headset… let’s see if this technique goes to repay.

More info

Meta and Luxottica launched Ray-Ban Meta Glasses

Meta and Exilor-Luxottica have introduced the second version of the Ray-Ban Tales glasses, known as Ray-Ban Meta. These good glasses are a linear evolution of the earlier ones, that includes improved consolation, improved battery, improved digital camera (12MP), improved audio recording (5 microphones), and improved audio playback. There’s nonetheless no show, which ought to come within the subsequent model, based on the rumors. So this model remains to be meant to take pictures, movies, and have telephone calls.
 There have been two necessary improvements approaching this gadget.
 The primary huge innovation of Ray-Ban Tales 2 is that now they allow you to reside stream on Instagram and Fb. You’ll be able to so carry out a reside in your mates or your followers immediately from the perspective of your head, which in some contexts may be fairly cool. The glasses may also mechanically share your photos and movies on social media channels.
 The second huge innovation is that they are going to be related with Meta AI, the brand new conversational AI system created by Meta (one thing like Meta’s model of ChatGPT). When sporting Ray-Ban Tales 2, it is possible for you to to ask Meta AI no matter you need, like writing a caption in your Instagram reel that you simply simply shot, and it’ll do it for you. With an replace coming subsequent yr, the glasses will be capable to see what you see and listen to what you hear, to allow them to aid you in giving options which are contextual to the state of affairs you’re in. So you possibly can take a look at a damaged vase and ask the glasses the best way to repair it. That is extremely cool and helpful, however comes additionally with some privateness strings hooked up. On the strictly technical aspect, that is what we all the time dreamt of for the longer term: an AI assistant that may assist us wherever we’re, utilizing our contextual info to assist us higher. However the truth that Meta can see what I see feels a bit… cringe.
 This characteristic is coming subsequent yr and can roll out ranging from the US. I suppose one of many causes for the US-first launch is that the EU has stricter guidelines about privateness, and a system that sees what you see has inherent privateness issues
 On October seventeenth folks will be capable to purchase the brand new Ray-Ban Meta smartglasses ranging from $299.

More info

Information price a point out

Info leaks on Vive’s inside-out Tracker

There’s a new leak concerning the inside-out tracked Vive Tracker that HTC teased a couple of months in the past. And as you possibly can think about, the leaks come from him, all the time him: Brad Lynch. The information is that the gadget could also be known as Vive Final Tracker and retail at $200 per unit. To work, trackers want a customized Vive dongle which prices $39. Trackers ought to be suitable at launch with Vive Focus 3 and Vive XR Elite, with PC compatibility anticipated later. It’s not clear if they will additionally work sooner or later with the headsets from Pico and Meta.

More info

The Las Vegas dome hosts an astonishing live performance by the U2

The U2 was the primary band to carry out inside the massive dome in Las Vegas, and the pictures which were recorded from the efficiency are fairly cool. The Dome, all coated in an enormous show, confirmed some unbelievable results, and folks had quite a lot of enjoyable. Everybody was speaking about it on social media.
 Generally VR and not using a headset may be cool too 🙂

More info (U2 concert in the dome / 1)
More info (U2 concert in the dome / 2)
More info (U2 concert in the dome / 3)

Microsoft launches Mesh For Enterprise In Beta

After a few years of engaged on it, lastly, Microsoft has lastly launched a preview of Microsoft Mesh devoted to the enterprise sector. Within the month of October, corporations will be capable to use Mesh inside Microsoft Groups, so members of an organization can meet in a 3D area (in VR or flatscreen) and work together collectively. It’s also attainable to create your customized areas to make use of in Mesh both with a no-code editor or through the use of Unity to create extra customized and sophisticated scenes.
 It appears me a really fascinating resolution, and I can’t wait to present it a strive with my colleagues.

More info

Bigscreen Past received its first actual evaluations

A very powerful VR magazines, Street To VR and Add VR, have reviewed this week the Bigscreen Past, reporting very comparable optimistic and detrimental suggestions. The optimistic aspect of this headset is that it is rather small and light-weight, so very snug to put on for lengthy intervals of time. The detrimental aspect is that its eye field may be very small, so if you happen to don’t put on it completely, the visuals are usually not going to be good. Additionally, it lacks built-in audio, which in 2023 is an enormous situation.

More info (Bigscreen Beyond review — Road To VR)
More info (Bigscreen Beyond review — Upload VR)

Amazon broadcasts new Echo Frames

Amazon has introduced the brand new mannequin of its Echo Frames glasses, that are smartglasses that join you to Alexa. This new mannequin has new cool kinds and options improved battery life, all for $269.99.
 These glasses come at a time when Amazon is having issues in making Alexa keep related: new generative AI chatbots like ChatGPT are in reality taking its place. (Thanks Tom FFiske for sharing the article about this one)

More info (New Amazon Echo glasses)
More info (Amazon having problems with Alexa)

Pimax broadcasts Crystal Sim mannequin

Pimax has simply introduced a brand new headset (as a result of there have been so few of them available in the market). Let me copy-paste the outline of it:
 Pimax has lengthy made headsets widespread amongst racing and flight simmers, together with the newest Crystal. Pimax has now responded to the request of many simmers by including an SKU: The Crystal-Sim, obtainable proper now for a worth of $1449, or $1549 with the Lighthouse.
 The Crystal-Sim is an replace to the Pimax Crystal, with out controllers, and a decrease refresh charge possibility. As an added bonus, the Crystal-Sim comes with a novel faceplate (prospects can select), and a reduction for a Lighthouse faceplate.
 The Pimax Crystal-Sim (Crystal-Sim Flight or Crystal-Sim Racing) is ideal for simmers, with a decision of 2880×2880 decision per eye, glass aspheric lenses with minimal to no distortion, and Tobii-powered eye-tracking for Dynamic Foveated Rendering.
 The Crystal-Sim has the choice to make use of 72 Hz, in addition to 90 Hz and 120 Hz. The Crystal-Sim comes with out controllers as flight simmers typically use a yoke, and racing simmers use a steering wheel.

More info

Final week I reported to you about an experiment utilizing 3D Gaussian Splatting and after that, the neighborhood helped me in understanding higher what it’s. It’s a new progressive rendering approach that as an alternative of rendering triangles (therefore, a mesh), renders a degree cloud of Gaussian distributions. The results of this operation is a really quick rendering that may present you quasi-realistic scenes at 90FPS. There’s quite a lot of hype round this know-how, and lots of analysis teams are finding out its functions, additionally for XR.

More info (What is Gaussian Splatting / 1)
More info (What is Gaussian Splatting / 2)
More info (What is Gaussian Splatting / 3)

A Redditor claims that VR makes him piss

The WTF information of the week is a put up on Reddit with a man claiming that utilizing VR provides him the urge to piss. Some folks answered the put up saying that to them VR provides them the urge to poop. I believe they need to arrange a gathering and turn into mates… simply being cautious that if there are VR headsets concerned, there are sufficient bathrooms to accommodate all of them…

More info

Valve Launches SteamVR 2.0 in beta

Lastly, after a few years engaged on it, Valve has launched SteamVR 2.0 (in beta), a whole overhaul of the SteamVR interface, to make it extra fashionable, usable, and much like the interface of different gadgets just like the SteamDeck. We’re all questioning if this software program replace has been made in preparation for a {hardware} launch…

More info

HTC provides a Viveport Anniversary Deal

HTC Vive is providing a particular deal on Viveport to have a good time the seventh anniversary of the platform. Annual subscribers can get without cost Primal Hunt, Till You Fall, and Fracked, whereas month-to-month subscribers solely Fracked. The provide is obtainable each for present members and new members becoming a member of earlier than October, eighth.

More info

Some information about content material

  • Sony has introduced a couple of new video games for its PSVR 2 headset. Most of them are shooters
  • Schell Video games is engaged on Kurzgesagt, an academic expertise that permits you to discover actuality at totally different scales
  • Dungeon Full Dive arrives on October 23 on SteamVR. It’s meant to allow you to play D&D on PC VR
  • Subsequent Transfer is a VR platformer anticipated to return on November 30 on the Meta Quest platform and PC VR.
  • Genotype, an FPS-style motion journey set in Antarctica, is launching in October. If you happen to preorder now, you get a 14% low cost
  • Stranger Issues VR launches on November 30 on Quest. There will even be a combined actuality expertise associated to it
  • “Neko Atsume Purrfect” is an expertise all about kittens anticipated for the winter of 2023
  • Staff Beef has simply launched the VR mod of the legendary Duke Nukem 3D!
  • Knowledge Watcher is a VR enviornment shooter impressed by the entire repertoire of Italian and European folklore recreation developed by an Italian group.

More info (Sony PSVR 2 games)
More info (Kurzgesagt)
More info (Dungeon Full Dive)
More info (Next Move)
More info (Genotype)
More info (Stranger Things VR)
More info (Purrfect)
More info (Duke Nukem 3D)
More info (Wisdom Watcher)

Some evaluations about content material

  • Outta Hand has been Add’s favourite recreation at Gamescom: it’s a platformer which exploits Gorilla Tag motion mechanic and it’s enjoyable and variated
  • Add had a preview of Soul Covenant and appreciated its motion mechanics.

More info (Outta Hand)
More info (Soul Covenant)

Different information

Add VR journalists have written a roundup of their expertise at Gamescom

Learn more

Epic Video games has simply laid off greater than 800 staff, confirming the detrimental second for tech corporations

Learn more

Snap shuts down its enterprise companies division

Learn more

A graph reveals how yearly there are all the time fewer video games launched for VR on Steam

Learn more

Meta updates the XR Simulator, that permits you to simulate your headset when you’re debugging your VR utility

Learn more

Add went hands-on with Sony’s prototypical haptic VR controllers

Learn more

Information from companions (and mates)


Chinese language producer LAWK has simply began a Kickstarter marketing campaign for its new smartglasses, dubbed LAWK One. That is how the corporate describes them:
 Get able to be amazed by the all-in-one marvel that’s LAWK ONE. Our AR knowledge visualization, sports activities knowledge monitoring and recording, 4K video taking pictures capabilities, superior navigation options, music playback performance, and far more — all inside a single gadget weighing solely 80g. Might be substituted for bike computer systems, sports activities cameras, and Bluetooth earphones, and bid farewell to the inconvenience of carrying a number of devices.
Learn more

Some XR enjoyable

Meta throughout Meta Join 2023
Funny link

Quest Professional after the discharge of Quest 3
Funny link

Boz says PlayStation in the course of the Quest 3 occasion
Funny link

ChatGPT is turning into all the time extra human in his solutions
Funny link

Valve has lastly launched its headse… ah no
Funny link

Sneak Peek of the brand new NVIDIA RTX5090
Funny link

Properly, that is an fascinating evaluate for positive…
Funny link

Donate for good

Like final week, additionally this week on this last paragraph I received’t ask you to donate for my weblog, however to the poor folks which are going through the results of the battle. Please donate to the Crimson Cross to deal with the present humanitarian state of affairs in Ukraine. I’ll go away you the hyperlink to try this beneath.
 Let me take a second earlier than to thank anyway all my Patreon donors for the assist they provide to me:

  • Alex Gonzalez VR
  • DeoVR
  • GenVR
  • Eduardo Siman
  • Jonn Fredericks
  • Jean-Marc Duyckaerts
  • Reynaldo T Zabala
  • Richard Penny
  • Terry xR. Schussler
  • Ilias Kapouranis
  • Paolo Leoncini
  • Immersive.worldwide
  • Nikk Mitchell and the nice FXG group
  • Jake Rubin
  • Alexis Huille
  • Raghu Bathina
  • Chris Koomen
  • Cognitive3D
  • Wisear (Yacine Achiakh)
  • Jennifer Granger
  • Jason Moore
  • Steve Biggs
  • Julio Cesar Bolivar
  • Jan Schroeder
  • Kai Curtis
  • Francesco Strada
  • Sikaar Keita
  • Ramin Assadollahi
  • Juan Sotelo
  • Andrew Sheldon
  • Chris Madsen
  • Horacio Torrendell
  • Andrew Deutsch
  • Fabien Benetou
  • Tatiana Kartashova
  • Marco “BeyondTheCastle” Area
  • Eloi Gerard
  • Adam Boyd
  • Jeremy Dalton
  • Joel Ward
  • Alex P
  • Lynn Eades
  • Donald P
  • Casie Lane
  • Catherine Henry
  • Qcreator
  • Ristband (Anne McKinnon & Roman Rappak)
  • Stephen Robnett
  • KaihatsuJai
  • Sb
  • Enrico Poli
  • Vooiage Applied sciences
  • Caroline
  • Liam James O’Malley
  • Hillary Charnas
  • Wil Stevens
  • Brian Peiris
  • Francesco Salizzoni
  • Dimo Pepelyashev
  • Alan Smithson
  • Steve R
  • Brentwahn
  • Pieter Siekerman
  • Matt Cool
  • Simplex
  • Gregory F Gorsuch
  • Matias Nassi

And now right here you’re the hyperlink to donate:

Support The Red Cross in Ukraine

(Header picture by Meta)

Disclaimer: this weblog accommodates commercial and affiliate hyperlinks to maintain itself. If you happen to click on on an affiliate hyperlink, I will be very completely satisfied as a result of I will earn a small fee in your buy. You’ll find my boring full disclosure right here.