The tech industry shows that even amid a pandemic, consumers are still eager to see new products and the innovation that comes along with it. Apple recently wrapped up "Time Flies" event which debuted several new items: The Apple Watch Series 6, Apple Watch SE, iPad Air 4, and iPad 8. Now, its time for the Facebook Connect presentation where folks can expect to learn about the latest hardware and services related to virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) experiences.
A few years back, the company acquired VR headset manufacturer Oculus for $2 billion. According to the social networking service's CEO Mark Zuckerberg, VR technology is the computing platform of the future. At the time, he lauded the potential of VR/AR to "change the way we work, play and communicate." As the ongoing health crisis forces people to stay indoors and explore new ways to stay connected, a unique solution might be introduced soon.
"There's a spike in awareness and interest in adopting these technologies, not just from consumers, but enterprise," said Gartner analyst Tuong Nguyen. "Despite that, there's still some hurdles that VR needs to overcome," he added as reported by CNET. Those who want to view the Facebook Connect event can view it on the official page of Facebook Reality Labs. Meanwhile, those who own Oculus VR headsets can do so via the Oculus Venues app for a more immersive experience.
The developers apparently want to introduce new ways for its users to interact in the virtual world. Facebook Horizon is a new service that was demonstrated in 2019 during the Oculus presentation (rebranded into Facebook Connect in 2020). Using compatible VR headsets, people can interact through 3D avatars to play games or just socialise with others. Most describe it as a virtual theme park wherein players can just have fun.
Second-generation Oculus Quest
Last year, Facebook released the $399 Oculus Quest – a VR headset that offers wireless freedom for the user. Although it's not as powerful as the Rift series it is a capable platform for entertainment. With some online retailers spotted listing the product as discontinued, analysts believe a new version will be announced soon.
Other products and technology
Facebook Connect might also showcase the rumoured Orion AR glasses, which will function like most smart glasses. Users would be able to answer calls, view information, stream media, and other social network functionalities. Finally, there's also talk of a proprietary brain-computer interface technology being developed to allow people to control their devices and so much more.