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Zuckerberg draws line in sand between Meta Quest and Apple Vision Pro

Meta boss Mark Zuckerberg watched the WWDC 2023 keynote like the rest of us and, well, he wasn’t overly fussed about the Vision Pro proposition. Reportedly.

In an address to the entire company, the CEO of Facebook et al moaned that the Vision Pro isn’t the ‘vision’ of future computing he wants to see. Although also acknowledged it might be the one that winds out.

He made the point Apple is charging seven times as much for its headset as the Meta Quest 3 and said there are philosophical differences in making sure mixed reality can be accessible to a wide audience.

Zuckerberg also said there was nothing ‘magic’ about what Apple announced that Meta hadn’t already thought of, and pointed out Apple had made a number of design trade-offs to get as much power and advanced tech into the headset – including the wire and external battery pack that only lasts for two hours.

The social media forefather did say Apple’s decisions may end up making sense for the use cases Cupertino is pushing and did acknowledge he hasn’t used the product yet.

However, the point of the comments to staff seemed to be to underline the different values and approaches to the sector. He also pointed out that the Meta Quest series has sold tens of millions, so isn’t exactly a lightweight who won’t contend the potential usurper.

The full comments on the matter, reported by The Verge, read:

Apple finally announced their headset, so I want to talk about that for a second. I was really curious to see what they were gonna ship. And obviously I haven’t seen it yet, so I’ll learn more as we get to play with it and see what happens and how people use it.

“From what I’ve seen initially, I’d say the good news is that there’s no kind of magical solutions that they have to any of the constraints on laws and physics that our teams haven’t already explored and thought of. They went with a higher resolution display, and between that and all the technology they put in there to power it, it costs seven times more and now requires so much energy that now you need a battery and a wire attached to it to use it. They made that design trade-off and it might make sense for the cases that they’re going for.

But look, I think that their announcement really showcases the difference in the values and the vision that our companies bring to this in a way that I think is really important. We innovate to make sure that our products are as accessible and affordable to everyone as possible, and that is a core part of what we do. And we have sold tens of millions of Quests.

More importantly, our vision for the metaverse and presence is fundamentally social. It’s about people interacting in new ways and feeling closer in new ways. Our device is also about being active and doing things. By contrast, every demo that they showed was a person sitting on a couch by themself. I mean, that could be the vision of the future of computing, but like, it’s not the one that I want. There’s a real philosophical difference in terms of how we’re approaching this. And seeing what they put out there and how they’re going to compete just made me even more excited and in a lot of ways optimistic that what we’re doing matters and is going to succeed. But it’s going to be a fun journey.

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