Last week, Meta launched Room Setup, a new feature for its Meta Quest virtual reality (VR) headset that enables users to mark real-world objects via the headset’s passthrough feature.
Using Meta Quest controllers, users can mark windows, walls, and doors in their real-world, turning these objects into mixed reality (MR) assets. In April, Meta updated the Quest to let users draw their physical desk and keyboard as an MR asset.
Meta added “The World Beyond”, an MR immersive experience, to its experimental App Lab platform to promote the update. App Lab provides Quest developers with an alternative distribution avenue to prototype immersive content.
In the MR immersive experience, Meta Quest users can outline their real-world environment. The software overlays an interactable creature on top of the user’s environment following the marking process. A user can then play with and direct the animal using controller inputs.
Meta first debuted The World Beyond in a promotional teaser for the Project Cambria headset. During which, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg trialled the prototype headset and showcased the immersive MR game.
The version currently available on Meta Quest hardware displays at a lower resolution when compared to the Cambria teaser, and the passthrough shows up as black and white. Although, the Cambria edition of The World Beyond appears to have a higher resolution and colour passthrough.
The Big 40
Meta added the MR features as part of the “Big 40” update for the Quest headset. Released mid-May, Meta Quest V40 introduced vital security and privacy features, following Meta pledging to an ethical Metaverse.
The firm is updating application moderation. Quest owners can now use App Unlock to restrict access to immersive experiences not suitable for specific users such as a child.
Meta is updating its 3D Secure payment platform for Meta Quest titles to include an authentication step redirecting a user to the smartphone sister application. Meta is gradually rolling out the authentication so users can pay for content with their credit cards.
The final security update adds end-to-end encryption for Facebook Messanger, which keeps all text and voice notifications made on the service private across all devices.
The Menlo-Park firm also supports new keyboard models for its Bluetooth connectivity feature. Now, a user can connect their Logitech K375s and Logitech MX keyboard wirelessly to their headset.
Additionally, Meta is improving general accessibility for the Meta Quest device. The firm added an audio accessibility tab in its options menu, meaning hard of hearing individuals can modify the audio output to enhance their comfort and immersion levels.
PCVR Streaming Leaks
The news comes as Analyst Brad Lynch revealed “Avalanche”, a potential PC VR streaming feature for the Meta Quest. In a Twitter post, Lynch shared a leaked screenshot of the Quest options menu which shows the streaming alternative.
Someone contacted me (and posted on Reddit) claiming they had access to the Avalanche Cloud PC VR Streaming functionality Meta is internally testing
— Brad Lynch (@SadlyItsBradley) May 27, 2022
The leaked feature potentially allows the Meta Quest device to stream PC VR services wirelessly to the headset using a cloud service and WiFi 5 connectivity.
Previously, Meta had success with PC VR streaming with Airlink, which connects a Mata Quest headset to a desktop operating on the same WiFi access point.