Meta plans to launch its first pair of AR glasses in 2024, according to a new report, with insiders claiming CEO Mark Zuckerberg has some lofty goals for the product.
One former Meta employee who worked on the augmented reality product told The Verge “Zuck’s ego is intertwined with [the glasses]. He wants it to be an iPhone moment.”
The headset – which is reportedly called Project Nazare internally – will be designed to work independently of an iPhone or Android phone, which the report describes as ‘a way to get out from under the thumb’ of the smartphone giants. That being said, the first-gen device is set to run on a version of Android.
The report says the first generation device will have its own wireless ‘phone-shaped’ device that contains some of the computing power. That’ll be important given the device’s ‘marquee’ feature will be a replacement for video calling based around holograms projected within the user’s eyeline. Sources say Zuckerberg believes this will prove more immersive than your average FaceTime call.
The report also says the initial model would have a “socially acceptable” design, before a lighter and more advanced model shows up two years later. Right now, the product looks like those worn by Clark Kent in the Richard Donner Superman films, according to the report. However they currently weigh a hefty 100 grams.
The field of view is likely to be less than 70-degrees the report says, while the hardware could also feature eye tracking, and an outward-facing camera similar to the current Meta Quest 2 headsets, and indeed the rumoured Quest 3 and Quest Pro.
As for the price, it’s likely to be far more expensive than the current VR Quest models, and thus will be aimed at enthusiasts initially. A lower-end pair of smart glasses, which would still rely on a phone, could also arrive in 2024 under the codename Hypernova.
Apple of course, is believed to be working on its own version of AR Glasses, may too see their product as a potential ‘iPhone moment’. Interestingly, Nazare is Portuguese for Nazareth, so some God complex stuff might be happening here too. Indeed, The Verge’s report says Meta employees have referred to Zuckerberg’s involvement in the project as akin to the all-seeing ‘Eye Of Sauron’. Eerie!