Facebook does not want his hardware like Oculus or his augmented reality glasses to be dependent on Google because they are based on its Android operating system. For this reason, according to Alex Heath of The Information, Mark commissioned Luc Lucsky, co-author of Microsoft Windows NT, to build the social network as an operating system from scratch. Facebook's smartphone apps will continue to be available for Android.
"We really want to make sure the next generation has room for us," said Andrew Boz, vice president of hardware at Facebook. "We don't believe that we can trust the market or our competitors to make sure that it does." And so we'll do it ourselves. "
By switching to its own operating system, Facebook could have more freedom to integrate social interaction – and hopefully privacy – more deeply into its devices. It could also prevent a disagreement between Google and Facebook from derailing the roadmaps of its gadgets. Facebook tells trendzhq that the focus of this work is on the requirements for AR glasses. All options are currently being considered, including a possible partnership with other companies or the development of a custom operating system specifically for augmented reality.
An additional bonus when switching to an operating system owned by Facebook? It could be more difficult to force Facebook to outsource some of its acquisitions, especially if Facebook uses Instagram branding for its future augmented reality glasses.
and the user interface of Facebook Home were executed on the Facebook phone built with HTC hardware. However, the drowning experience in friends' photos and Messenger chat bubbles proved extremely unpopular, and both HTC First and Facebook Home were put on hold.
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Now Facebook hopes to learn from past mistakes as it reinforces its hardware efforts with a new office for the AR / VR team in Burlingame, 15 miles north of the company's headquarters. The 770,000 square meter area offers space for around 4,000 employees. Facebook tells trendzhq that the team will move there in the second half of 2020 to use labs, prototypes, and test areas. The AR / VR team will continue to have members in other offices in California, Washington, New York and abroad.
trendzhq asked for more information about the space and Facebook announced that it is planning to open a publicly accessible experience space – possibly the first permanent location with the Facebook logo that anyone can visit. There, people can play with augmented reality and virtual reality products. These could range from the Oculus Quest headsets and the smart displays on the Facebook portal, which are currently being sold, to potential future products such as the camera glasses allegedly manufactured with the Ray Ban manufacturer Luxottica and finally its full AR- Glasses.
Facebook is considering building real retail space in the Burlingame office so people can try out their hardware products and then buy them. This would be a significant first step in the direction of Facebook and Apple and Microsoft style retail space.
Facebook was interested in potentially controlling a larger portion of the hardware stack and had acquisition talks with the $ 4.5 billion semiconductor company Cirrus Logic, which produces audio chips for Apple and other manufacturers. This deal never materialized, and it is unclear how far the talks went, as technology giants keep their M&A teams open for discussion. But it shows how seriously Facebook takes the hardware, even though sales of the Portal and Oculus have so far been sluggish. Facebook declined to comment.
That could change next year, however, when the flagship of virtual reality comes onto the market. I have a press preview of the upcoming first person shooter Medal of Honor, which will be released on the Oculus Quest in 2020. An hour of World War II passed, and it was one of the first VR games to feel like you could enjoy it week after week instead of just being a tech demo. Medal of Honor could prove to be the killer app that convinces gamers to get a quest.
Facebook also worked on hardware experiences for the company. Facebook Workplace video calls can now be made through the portal, with the intelligent camera automatically zooming in to keep everyone in the boardroom in the picture or to focus on the action. The information reports Facebook is currently creating a prototype for a VR video conference system that Boz and his team have tested. Facebook tells trendzhq that Boz hosted two internal events where it conducted VR video conferencing with about 100 of its team leaders using virtual Q&A software. Facebook creates prototypes internally. It is hoped to find out what would be necessary to consistently hold meetings in VR.
The hardware initiatives are now affecting Facebook's core business. Some data is now being used about what users do on their Oculus or portal to target them with ads. From certain games to accessing child-friendly experiences to virtual teleporting to holiday destinations, Facebook has a lot of lucrative data that I could possibly have obtained.
Facebook tells trendzhq that the portal is currently using data to provide information about ad targeting, such as: B. when you log in, make calls or use certain functions. For example, ads related to video calls might appear if you do this frequently. When you connect to your Facebook account with Oculus, data about the apps or events you use that you participate in can be used to optimize the algorithms or target ads.
Facebook even wants to know what concerns us before we respond. According to the information, Facebook's hardware for controlling interfaces has been downsized using sensors to recognize a word that a user thinks is a brain-computer interface. It has evolved from the size of a refrigerator to something hand-held, but is far from ready to be integrated into a phone. Facebook tells trendzhq that it is making progress, significantly improving the word error rate, and expanding the dictionary of words that can be recognized. Facebook can now decipher brain activity in real time and is working on a switching system for identifying individual words, which is heading for a brain typing of 100 words per minute.
While selling Oculus headsets, portal screens, and mind readers can never generate the billions of dollars that Facebook generates from its efficient advertising business, they can ensure that the social network is not protected from the next wave of computers. No matter whether they are fully engaging like virtual reality, practical additions to our cell phones such as smart displays or minimally invasive sensors, Facebook wants them to be social. If Facebook brings your friends to your new gadgets, it will find a way to filter out the revenue while preventing these devices from making us more isolated and less human.