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Sunday, July 14, 2024

Meta’s Integration of AI in Smart Glasses, Assistants, and More

To regain lost ground in the race for artificial intelligence, Meta Chief Mark Zuckerberg stated on Wednesday that the tech giant is integrating AI into digital assistants and smart glasses.

At the Meta headquarters in Silicon Valley, where the company’s primary yearly product event is held, Zuckerberg made his remarks during the Connect developers conference. Zuckerberg introduced the event by saying, “AI advancements allow us to construct various applications and personas that help us accomplish various tasks.” The ability to combine everything into a fashionable form factor that we can wear will someday be made possible by smart glasses. One of several attempts by tech companies to develop devices that are more user-friendly than smartphones, but so far without much success, is the development of smart glasses.

On October 17, the second generation of Meta Ray-Ban smart glasses, created in collaboration with EssilorLuxottica, will go on sale for $299. According to Zuckerberg, smart glasses also provide users the option to stream what they see in real time. The best form factor for letting AI helpers see and hear what you’re seeing and hearing is through smart glasses. Moreover, Meta has introduced 28 artificial intelligence avatars, each with distinct “personas” inspired by well-known figures like Snoop Dogg, Paris Hilton, and YouTube sensation Mr. Beast. These avatars are available for users to engage in conversations with on WhatsApp, Messenger, and Instagram. During a live demonstration, Zuckerberg assured that these AI entities would soon be equipped with voices as he engaged in a chat with one of them onstage.

Nevertheless, it’s crucial to emphasize that this represents merely the preliminary phase of development, and there remain notable constraints that will become evident once these tools are put into practical use. The unveiling of generative AI advancements generated high expectations, especially considering that this is the first live version of Connect since 2019, before the pandemic. When it comes to releasing AI products, Meta has been far more careful than its competitors Microsoft, OpenAI, and Google, prioritizing small advances and making its internal models available to academics and developers. A presentation for AFP revealed that Meta had also showcased the most recent iteration of their Quest virtual reality headgear, which had sharper graphics, better audio, and the capability for a wearer to observe their surroundings without removing the equipment.

Zuckerberg told developers gathering in the courtyard of the Meta headquarters, “This is going to be a significant game-changer and a big capacity enhancement for these headsets.” According to Meta, Quest 3 headset shipments will commence on October 10 with prices starting at $499. This is significantly less expensive than Apple’s Vision Pro, which will cost a whopping $3,499 when it becomes available early next year, only in the United States. Amidst the audience’s amusement, Andrew Bosworth, the Chief Technology Officer at Meta, confidently stated that The Quest 3 would remain the most cost-effective option in the market for an extended period. As part of the Quest 3’s new gaming offerings, there were exciting releases such as Ubisoft’s Assassin’s Creed Nexus and a game from Roblox.

Yory Wurmser, principal analyst at Insider Intelligence, stated that Meta was attempting to make mixed reality more accessible to the general public. Chris Cox, the chief product officer at Meta, made light of his sister’s frequent complaints about striking furniture while using virtual reality, saying that this problem is solved by equipment that digitally enhances the environment rather than replacing it. Cox said, “Compared to virtual reality, which is essentially a wholly veiled experience, we think mixed reality is a tremendously substantial advance.” That will contribute to this being more helpful to more people.

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