New AR/VR Tools Are Up for Facebook – And AR Glasses Are on the Way!

Facebook held its Facebook Connect event on 16 September 2020, to showcase a whole new host of tools for AR and VR. During the event, Facebook made a few pretty big announcements. Here’s what some of them were:

First off, Facebook will soon be releasing the Project Aria smart glasses. The glasses are currently being tested by Facebook staff, and they are scheduled to be released in 2021. This is what Facebook had to say about the glasses:

“Imagine a pair of glasses that add a 3D layer of useful, contextually-relevant and meaningful information on top of the physical world. Such a device could help us perform everyday tasks better — like finding your keys, navigating a new city, or capturing a moment; but it could also open up an entirely new way of moving through the world.”

The Project Aria smart glasses are meant to collect data and information that can be used to further develop the smart glasses and pave the way for creating fully functional AR vision glasses. Facebook has long explored the possibilities of developing AR glasses, and the Project Aria smart glasses are a stepping stone to further advancement in the area.

Secondly, Facebook announced the launch of the Oculus Quest 2 – Facebook’s newest VR headset. The tech giant has been dabbling in VR as it believes that it is the future of social networking. Now, the VR headset is set to enhance the VR experience of anyone who uses it. It is now available for pre-order, and prices start at $299.

Thirdly, Facebook announced that it would be expanding its AR development program to both Messenger and Portal. The Spark AR Creator has been a widely used tool by creators across social media, and to date, there are about 1.2 million AR effects available for use. Some of the AR filters have even gone viral, and they have proven to be entertaining ways to use social media.

Facebook also shared updated AR capabilities for Instagram ads to come, such as free virtual makeup trials and the option to see virtual furniture as how it would normally appear in one’s home. 

These are but a few of Facebook’s big announcements during the Facebook Connect event. The tech giant continually seeks to develop in the fields of AR and VR, and it looks like next year will be a key year for them rolling out a lot of their newest offers.

Implications for Marketers:

Facebook’s new AR tools for Instagram will provide marketers with a creative new way to market brands and businesses. The virtual makeup and furniture trials are only two of the countless possibilities that they could test out. Brands could look into developing AR content that users across Instagram would enjoy using as opposed to the traditional forms of digital media.

References:

https://www.engadget.com/facebook-messenger-portal-spark-ar-170048646.html

https://www.theverge.com/2020/9/16/21439929/facebook-ar-smart-glasses-ray-ban-announcement?scrolla=5eb6d68b7fedc32c19ef33b4 

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