Meta seems to have high hopes for Project Cambria, with a leaked internal memo saying the upcoming VR headset is one of Meta’s hottest investment opportunities right now.
Billed as an advanced follow-up to the hugely popular Meta Quest 2 (previously called Oculus Quest 2), Cambria will come with all-new AR capabilities and face tracking. While it will likely continue to be used for gaming, the Meta instead appears to be directing it toward more commercial and industrial uses, a gamble that it will need to pay off (via Reuters (Opens in a new tab)).
This is because Meta has been having a hard time lately, financially. After it announced that Facebook saw its first-ever drop in daily users earlier this year, its stock prices fell, too. The downturn was further affected by a general economic slump that CEO Mark Zuckerberg predicts could be “one of the worst” downturns in recent history. In response, Meta has canceled several projects like its rival Apple Watch, cut jobs and hiring, and focused its efforts on what it believes are its most important opportunities.
Besides Cambria, Meta is also said to be looking to improve Reels – short video content similar to TikTok – with the goal of improving discoverability and serving ads alongside it to drive revenue.
As for its VR efforts, we haven’t yet seen what the Cambria can do, but the recently rumored specs make it seem like a solid improvement on what the Quest 2 has to offer. At least $800 (about £665/AU$1,175).
Given its high price tag, companies will need to be convinced that the new Meta is essential to improving workplace productivity, or this could be a big swing and miss for the social media giant. Players can come in and help pick up the slack — taking advantage of enhanced hardware to play the best virtual reality games out there — but they may also be put off by the price tag, which is likely to be more than double the cost of Quest 2.
With a 2022 release date on the cards, we probably won’t have to wait long before the Meta properly reveals what its headphone can do – and then we can all decide whether or not it’s a worthwhile investment.