Meta Reportedly Set to Unveil Prototype AR Glasses ‘Orion’ at Connect 2024

Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Meta, has recently revealed that the company’s prototype AR glasses are nearly ready to be presented to the public. The announcement was made in a video interview with Kane ‘Kallaway’ Sutter. According to Zuckerberg, the glasses are nearly ready, but they will initially be shown as a prototype rather than being available for sale.

The prototype AR glasses are different from other AR devices like HoloLens 2 or Quest 3, as they are intended to be glasses, not a headset. Zuckerberg mentioned that early testers had a positive reaction to the device, though he acknowledged that the prototype version may not be the most stylish.

The development of these glasses, known internally as Orion, has been underway for nearly nine years. Initial reports in March 2024 suggested that Meta’s AR team was preparing Orion to be unveiled at Connect 2024, typically held in October. There is pressure within the company to ensure high performance with Orion, much like they did with Project Aria, which was unveiled in 2020 and showcased sensors for AR perception systems.

It is uncertain if Orion and Project Nazare, which Meta teased in 2021, are the same project. Project Nazare was described by Zuckerberg as Meta’s “first full augmented reality glasses.” However, it may still be some time before a consumer version of these glasses is available, with previous reports suggesting it could be as late as 2027. The AR glasses being developed by Meta are expected to be ‘true’ AR glasses, rather than smartglasses like Google Glass or mixed reality headsets like Meta’s Quest line.

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