We all see VR headsets projecting images in three-dimensional animations: colorful sporting events, games, concerts, conferences, shows, and more. They bring us into a whole new world of virtual reality. Still, Meta has bigger plans for that technology by introducing its “high-end” VR headset, which currently has the codename “Project Cambria.”
In a recent post by Mark Zuckerberg on his own Facebook account, the Meta CEO showcased an intentionally blurred VR headset that he promises to come out “later this year.” The physical appearance of the device will really make you curious, but the true attraction it boasts is the experience Zuckerberg says will be called The World Beyond. “It uses our Presence Platform to blend the physical and virtual worlds together,” he says.
Basically, as shown by the demo of the CEO, the headset won’t just create a virtual world for you: it will merge three-dimensional graphics with the actual scenes captured by the headset. This results in “mixed reality” with full-color passthrough video of the outside world with overlaying virtual world elements. Zuckerberg says it will only be available in Cambria, but users will get to try it on Quest soon via App Lab.
The passthrough camera technology is already available in the $299 Quest 2 headset of Meta, but the full-color passthrough version of Cambria changes the way VR sets are defined. Zuckerberg demonstrated different functions Project Cambria can perform while still keeping your connection and vision to the real world. In the demo, he played with and petted a virtual animal and expanded the coverage of the virtual reality world with just a gesture.
Meta expresses its intention to use Project Cambria for other purposes, especially productivity. With this, Zuckerberg also mentioned some other applications of the headset, including working out with a virtual instructor and even pulling up windows virtually and arranging them in front of you.
As of now, information about Project Cambria is still very limited, especially with its price, which the Meta CEO openly hints as something to be high-end. A report from The Information said it would cost $799, but a company spokesperson denied it, saying it would be “significantly higher.” This confirms Zuckerberg’s description of the headset, but we are still far from knowing if its features, functions, and quality are really worth that mysterious high-end price.