Facebook Reality Labs Haptic Gloves: Details, Space, Release Date

Long before Facebook Officially naming itself Meta – a signal to the world that it is becoming more serious about virtual and augmented reality technology – the company began releasing key parts of its imagined metavars.

Its Meta Quest 2 (née Oculus Quest 2) was already considered one of the best wireless VR headsets available. Most recently, executives at the company’s research and development arm, Meta Reality Labs, unveiled a wearable wrist that translates electric motor nerve signals into digital command and an upcoming “Project Cambria” headset that is supposed to support realistic avatars and advanced eye-tracking.

Now, the controversial social media company কারণ because it’s still a social media company, and it’s still controversial করছে is releasing another of these future-VR prototypes. This time it’s a heptic glove designed to give the wearer a feeling that mimics the weight and feel of a real object while operating in a virtual space. Slip off this glove, and you can be sure that you are holding the real thing (or something close to it), even if the object is completely digital.

Shawn Keller of Reality Labs wears a prototype haptic glove.Photo: Facebook Reality Labs

Michael Abrash, chief scientist at Meta Reality Labs, and Shawn Keller, director of research science at Labs, say the haptic glove has been in operation for several years and is still not close to release to the public. But it is another part of the larger AR / VR image for Meta, where vision and sound and touch come together to make an expanded digital world more realistic.

Abrash says, “What we’re trying to do is give you a rich feedback so that your hands are fully fit. “It’s a key part and one of the most difficult, long-term risky pieces, but once it’s done, VR can really turn into an environment where you can do almost everything that’s effectively possible.”

All hands

The problem that Meta is trying to solve is a real problem in VR, which has stabbed other companies as well. Slip on a VR headset, and you’re disconnected from the real world. Slip on a VR headset with in-and-out tracking — a term often used to describe sensors and cameras that capture the environment around you — and make navigation more manageable.

But then when you try to use your physical hand to lift the virtual objects, the whole flirtation with VR becomes flat again. Suddenly feeling restless. The controller, as shipped with Quest 2, is a decent proxy for the hand and allows you to at least navigate the menu or play games while you’re wearing a full headset. However, these are mostly input devices and do not give you the kind of sensitive feedback you would get with your actual hand.

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