Meta, formerly Facebook, has opted not to sell the initial edition of its full-fledged AR glasses, codenamed Orion, and would instead offer them to developers.
According to The Verge, a person familiar with the situation said that the tech giant has opted to offer them to developers first so that they may design software experiences for the gadget and future iterations. In addition, the company is also scrapping plans to release a smartwatch with a detachable display and two cameras. This decision is just to favour a design that is more suited to controlling a later version of the glasses.
Meta’s original (first) version of the AR glasses, which have been in development for three years, were always intended for developers and early adopters, but management hadn’t decided whether to offer them to the general public until now, according to The Verge’s source. Employees in Meta’s Reality Labs section, which develops VR and AR devices, were told of the decision this week. Initially, The Information published the revelation on Thursday.
Meta is working on three different versions of standalone AR glasses
Meta is working on three different versions of standalone AR glasses. These glasses will be released over the next few years, as The Verge reported in April. The decision to not sell the first version was taken due to the device’s high cost of manufacture. In addition, executives believe that some specifications, such as display brightness, are not consumer-ready.
Not selling the glasses to customers is similar to Snap’s strategy, which does not sell its AR Spectacles but instead gives them to software developers.
Meta’s version two of the AR glasses, codenamed Artemis, is still on track for a consumer release. And that too with a less bulky appearance and more improved display technology at a larger manufacturing volume.
Meta also hopes to introduce an entry-level, cheaper version of AR glasses, dubbed Hypernova, as soon as next year. These glasses would link with a nearby phone to show incoming texts and other notifications through a tiny heads-up display.