With the updated Meta Quest 3, Meta is making strides toward its goal of taking over the AR industry.
The $500 headgear is a full makeover of past models and was unveiled by CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Wednesday at the company’s virtual Meta Connect event. The Quest 3, which was first unveiled in June, promises enhanced performance, compelling new mixed-reality features, and a more streamlined, cozy aesthetic.
The Quest 3 is a significant improvement over the Quest 2 with a considerably powerful processor, higher-resolution display, updated Touch Plus controllers, and a 40% thinner body. While the Meta Quest Pro includes sophisticated passthrough cameras so you can view your actual surroundings and costs a stunning $1,000, the Meta Quest 2 only supports virtual reality.
“A digital ball will bounce off a physical wall if you pick it up and throw it at it,” Zuckerberg stated at Meta Connect on Wednesday. “You just hide behind your physical couch if someone is shooting at you and you want to avoid the fire.”
With the launching of the Quest 3 on Wednesday, the Meta Quest virtual library became completely available. This library now includes VR-friendly Roblox and will soon incorporate X Box cloud gaming, allowing users to play games like Halo and Minecraft on a big screen from any location.
The headset, which comes in two storage configurations (128GB and 512GB), is now available for preorder and will go on sale on October 10.
The Quest 2 was released three years ago, the Quest Pro was released less than a year after, and the Apple Vision Pro was released less than four months following the Quest 2.
The Quest 3, which Mark Zuckerberg has dubbed the “first mainstream mixed reality headset,” is a component of a continuing arms race between two of the biggest names in technology to control the headset market. It also represents Zuckerberg’s own personal vision for the next-generation internet, in which users can interact with each other in virtual spaces that resemble real life. It is also far less expensive than the Apple counterpart (it costs $3,499 to be exact) and still functions primarily as a VR headset with options for different realities, as opposed to Apple’s product, which is a specialized mixed reality experience.
Zuckerberg teased the Meta Quest 3 just days before Apple made its big announcement about the Vision Pro in June. However, there was tension between the two businesses even before Apple entered the market. Their CEOs have traded punches over data privacy and app store policies as they have fought over news and chat capabilities. When Apple decided to restrict how apps like Facebook might gather data for targeted adverts, Meta predicted that it would suffer a $10 billion loss in 2022.
Although Meta has held a monopoly on the headset industry up to this point, it has so far had difficulty drawing in a large consumer base for its VR headset offerings.