Meta Unveils Incredible Augmented Reality Headset at TED


Redwood City-based Meta showed its latest AR glasses live on stage at TED in Vancouver.

The Meta 2 was demonstrated live by CEO Meron Gribetz with a person-to-person “call” showing a hand-off of a 3D model from a holographic person. Gribetz’ perspective was shown through the glasses as he reached out and took a model of a brain — a 3D hologram — from the hands of a colleague he saw projected in front of him.

“We’re all going to be throwing away our external monitors,” Gribetz said.


Gribetz’ talk focused on the idea that “you” are the operating system. His roughly 100-person company is attempting to tap into a more natural way of interacting with information and the people around us, rather than sitting behind a computer terminal or hunched over a little rectangle of light. Instead, Gribetz sees everyone wearing tiny strips of glass in a few years.

“Living inside of Windows scares me,” he said of the current paradigm. “We’re trying to build a zero learning curve computer.”

Gribetz’ vision sounds similar to enormously well-funded Florida startup Magic Leap, which has only shown a video of its technology in action. The startups are attempting to layer digital information on top of our view of the real world, leading to entirely new ways of interacting with other people and processing information. It’s an enormously hard problem to solve though and requires huge advances in new display technologies that look good in a variety of lighting conditions, better movement tracking and lower power consumption. However, the potential for a wearable AR device you can take with you out in the real world is larger than a VR device that might be restricted to use at home.

The Meta demonstration live on stage was interspersed with videos showing footage “shot through Meta 2 technology.” The language is similar to the note at the bottom of the single public Magic Leap video, which says “shot directly through Magic Leap technology.” The disclaimers are likely there because it’s difficult to accurately depict through a traditional video what you can see when wearing an AR headset. For example, Microsoft has been criticized for the way it depicts HoloLens. The device features a limited field of view and comes at a high price, so gaming uses for the technology are likely very limited despite promotional videos showing sprawling mixed reality landscapes and games that take over entire living rooms. It’s unclear what field of view Meta 2 is capable of showing.





Augmented Reality for Sales Performance Support

by Hari Kumar

There’s a lot of hype around innovation: It can turnaround businesses. It differentiates you from your competitors. It is present inside everyone…Blah. Blah. Blah. The constant, all-pervasive, repetitive jargon around the word “innovation” has taken it to a point of banality. Ah, what a paradox!

Renowned market leaders like Intel, Siemens, Motorola, Apple, Google, Sony, General Electric, and so forth have always been ahead of their times. Just consider the fact that the average number of patents filed in America is around 23,000. If one was to identify a common trait among these innovative organizations, it is the use of technology.

Successful organizations are never scared of toying with new ideas, thinking the unthinkable, and bringing to reality what looks too forward-thinking to be true. Much like we are fascinated today by sci-fi movies that show people conjuring computer screens out of thin air, who could have thought that some 20 years ago that touch screens would be common place today?

Bottom line: Constant innovation is inevitable to withstanding competition. An organization that ceases to innovate will quickly lose out sales and market share. For example, consider the story of Kodak: After enjoying unrivalled position in the film-based business for several years, the industry leader lost out to the digital photography revolution (a technology that Kodak actually invented in 1975) simply because it was too complacent to change.

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Augmented And Virtual Reality To Hit $150 Billion, Disrupting Mobile By 2020



Editor’s note: Tim Merel is the managing director of Digi-Capital.

Virtual reality and augmented reality are exciting – Google Glass coming and going, Facebook’s $2 billion for Oculus, Google’s $542 million into Magic Leap, not to mention Microsoft’s HoloLens. There are amazing early-stage platforms and apps, but VR/AR in 2015 feels a bit like the smartphone market before the iPhone. We’re waiting for someone to say “One more thing…” in a way that has everyone thinking “so that’s where the market’s going!”

A pure quantitative analysis of the VR/AR market today is challenging, because there’s not much of a track record to analyze yet. We’ll discuss methodology below, but this analysis is based on how VR/AR could grow new markets and cannibalize existing ones after the market really gets going next year.

AR is from Mars, VR is from Venus

VR and AR headsets both provide stereo 3D high-definition video and audio, but there’s a big difference. VR is closed and fully immersive, while AR is open and partly immersive – you can see through and around it. Where VR puts users inside virtual worlds, immersing them, AR puts virtual things into users’ real worlds, augmenting them.

You might think this distinction is splitting hairs, but that difference could give AR the edge over not just VR, but the entire smartphone and tablet market. There are major implications for Apple, Google, Microsoft, Facebook and others.

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