Facebook is going to release a new high-end standalone VR headset in 2022, the company revealed during its Connect developer conference Thursday. Separately, the company also announced that it was going to retire the Oculus brand for its VR products.
Code-named "Project Cambria," the new VR headset will be backwards-compatible with the company's Quest platform, but not a Quest device itself. That suggests that apps specifically developed for Cambria won't run on Quest headsets.
The new VR headset will feature eye, facial and body tracking, and high-resolution video pass-through as well as 3D room sensing for mixed-reality experiences. The headset will use something Facebook calls "pancake optics" for a slimmer lens design.
Facebook didn't announce a launch date or price for Project Cambria yet, but Zuckerberg said that it would be at "the higher end of the price spectrum." "Our plan here is to keep building out our most advanced technology before we can hit the price point that we target with Quest."
Following the keynote and Zuckerberg's announcement that Facebook is rebranding as Meta, the company's top AR/VR exec Andrew Bosworth revealed that it would be retiring the Oculus brand next year. "You'll start to see the shift from Oculus Quest from Facebook to Meta Quest and Oculus App to Meta Quest App over time," Bosworth wrote in a Facebook post. "We all have a strong attachment to the Oculus brand, and this was a very difficult decision to make. While we're retiring the name, I can assure you that the original Oculus vision remains deeply embedded in how Meta will continue to drive mass adoption for VR today."
Mark Zuckerberg also teased the company's first set of AR glasses, code-named "Project Nazaré," during his keynote. Zuckerberg shared even fewer details about Project Nazaré, but a look at some of the technology that is being developed for these kinds of devices suggested that a release may still be several years away.
Update: This post was updated with information about the fate of the Oculus brand.