Meta has officially lifted the veil on its latest virtual reality (VR) headset, the Quest 3, in a reveal shared on CEO Mark Zuckerberg's Instagram account. Promising to hit the shelves this fall, the Quest 3 emerges as a revolution in the VR space, building upon its predecessor's features and introducing cutting-edge technology.
Offered at $499.99 for a 128GB version, the Quest 3 also presents an unspecified additional storage variant for those craving more space (details coming in the Meta Quest event for that one). It emerges as a more refined and enhanced upgrade from the Quest 2, featuring a 40 percent lighter design that promises a comfortable and immersive VR experience.
A key component of the new design is the addition of a cutting-edge Qualcomm Snapdragon processor. This next-generation chip is expected to deliver double the graphics performance of its predecessor, enabling incredibly immersive experiences with enhanced details and smoother gameplay.
Mark shows off a view of the Quest 3 insides, revealing intricate details of its internal architecture, layered from sensors to the outer front shell. This design allows the device to deliver high-quality immersive experiences, which is expected to make it a standout product in the VR industry.
The good news for Quest 2 users is that Quest 3 supports all Quest 2 games (hear that, Sony?). This compatibility extends the life of the existing game library, giving users a seamless transition between the generations. Meta also plans to reduce the price of the Quest 2 by $100, dropping the cost of the 128GB version to $299.99, while the 256GB variant will be reduced by $80 to $349.99, effectively negating those ridiculous previous price hikes.
The upcoming software update for Quest 2 and Meta's Quest Pro will boost their CPU and GPU performance, in addition to enabling Dynamic Resolution Scaling. This is particularly relevant with Apple's long-anticipated mixed reality headset launch on the horizon and the upcoming showcase for games on Meta's VR platform.
The Quest 3's handheld controllers have also been redesigned, providing more immersive interactions through TruTouch haptics. The new Touch Plus controllers feature a thumbstick, two buttons on the top, and one trigger button, enhancing the gaming experience.
An in-depth view of the Quest 3 reveals three sensor areas on the front of the device that set it apart from its predecessors. The new sensors, described as 'pill-shaped zones,' hold four cameras split evenly between the left and right sides, including two full-color cameras, two standard ones, and a middle depth sensor, which is expected to enhance the headset's Augmented Reality (AR) capabilities.
Adding another layer of user interaction, the new Touch Plus controllers are designed to work with the depth sensor and hand tracking is confirmed to be a built-in feature of the Quest 3, removing the need for additional peripherals.
Despite the anticipation, Meta has yet to reveal the full capabilities of these sensors and the possibilities they bring to the VR world. However, with the annual Meta Connect event scheduled for September 27th, it's expected that additional details and a showcase of the new AAA adventure title will be unveiled.
The Quest 3's combination of enhanced comfort, doubled graphics performance, and expanded sensor capabilities marks a significant step forward in the VR industry. These advancements make the Quest 3 a promising product in the evolving world of virtual reality, positioning Meta at the forefront of the technology. The countdown to the launch has begun, with tech enthusiasts and VR fans alike eagerly awaiting its arrival.
Are you interested in picking one up?