Mark Zuckerberg showed off the Quest Pro, a new VR headset, at an online event for developers.
With a price tag of $1,499 (£1,370), Quest Pro is almost four times more expensive than Meta’s current headset, the Quest 2, which starts at $399.
It has thinner lenses, a curved battery at the back of the head strap, and controllers that track themselves.
Users can also see their real surroundings around the edges of the screen when they wear the headset.
The difference between Quest Pro and its predecessor is that Quest Pro can show digital content on top of the real world.
Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Meta, said that mixed reality was “the next big step for VR.”
Tuong Nguyen, a Gartner analyst, said that the high price at launch made it better for “high-end, enthusiast, and maybe even enterprise users” than for the mass market.
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella also said that the Windows 365 office platform will be available on it. Meta wants to make mixed and virtual reality a work tool as well as a way to have fun.
The company Meta, which used to be called Facebook, is betting on the creation of a metaverse, which is a virtual world where people can live their everyday lives as avatars and explore fantasy virtual spaces.
Many tech companies are building their own metaverses, but it will probably be a few years before any of them are ready to be used.
Horizons, Meta’s current virtual reality world, has gotten mixed reviews so far, and there have been reports of violence and sexual assaults between avatars in it.
Chief Technology Officer Andrew Bosworth has also said, “There won’t be enough headsets for everyone for a while.”
Paolo Pescatore from PP Foresight said that it seemed like people were getting the technology “fast tracked.” He said, “There’s no need, so why hurry?”
During the event, there was a lot of talk about virtual reality apps. Some of these apps have made their creators a lot of money, like the VR version of the video game Resident Evil 4, which made $2 million in its first 24 hours.
Iron Man and Among Us are two of the new VR games that were announced, along with a partnership with Microsoft’s Xbox Cloud Gaming. But there was no news about VR Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, which some gamers were looking forwards to.
Andrew Bosworth said that YouTube VR was one of the most downloaded apps from the Quest store.
Vishal Shah, Meta’s vice president of the metaverse, said that the ultimate goal for the metaverse is to feel like any other social experience, big or small.