Facebook’s new wearable A.R controller offers a sneak peek at the company’s vision for the future of tech!
On Thursday, the social media behemoth let the outside world have the first look at their next-generation wrist-based controller prototype. It is a device that effectively utilises the combination of artificial intelligence, aka AI, and input from a user’s nervous system to let the wearer seamlessly interact with V.R. and A.R. elements in a real-world environment.
Currently, this prototype A.R. controller by Facebook is able to recognise simple gesture-based inputs such as the pinching and releasing of the thumb and forefinger. It then attributes the same to the equivalent of a button click and lets the user perform actions such as shooting a virtual bow and arrow. But wait, that’s not all.
The device also lets its wearers feel the sensation by using wrist-based haptics. Now, according to researchers at the Facebook Reality Labs, in the near future, the wearable A.R. controller will be able to provide more advanced capabilities, which include being able to touch and pick up various virtual interfaces and objects.
Facebook revealed that the tech will eventually grow to become so powerful that it will allow its users to type on a virtual keyboard projected in their laps or at a table at a way higher speed than what is possible with a physical keyboard at present.
Thomas Reardon, Director of Neuromotor Interfaces at Facebook Reality Labs, in a statement post the announcement of the first look, mentioned that neural interfaces when they work right, feel very similar to magic. However, there is much work to be done in that area.
Facebook, since 2014 wherein it first acquired Oculus V.R. for a whopping $2 billion, has been betting big on V.R. and A.R. based on its ideology that they are vast blue ocean areas with major growth potential.
According to Zuckerberg, the company wishes to lead the way people will be communicating and using computing platforms for the next decade and further. Thus, the aggressive push to create such groundbreaking technology.
As of now, the team of researchers and technologists at Facebook Reality Labs is also involved in the development of a contextually aware artificial intelligence-powered interface for their A.R. glasses – imagine Jarvis for Iron man!
At the Facebook Connect 2020 Conference, the company announced a new line of A.R. smart glasses in partnership with Ray-Ban. Facebook will soon be releasing them sometime later in 2021.
And if that’s nopt enoug to leave you stunned, in H2 2021, the social media giant will also be pulling back the curtains on its work in the field of ‘soft robotics’ in order to build all-day wearable and comfortable devices. We will keep you updated on all future developments. Until then, stay tuned.