Welcome back to Spatial Beats. Oculus Quest turned two this week. Facebook doesn’t break out the numbers, but Evercore ISI analyst Mark Mahaney estimates they sold more than eight million Quests in 2020. Facebook pushed its way into the headlines again this week for other reasons. First, the company announced it would change its name, making brands like Facebook, Instragram, Whatsapp, and Oculus operating subsidiaries. Speculation is the company is trying a rebrand following revelations it harms its customers on purpose to increase profits. Facebook also announced it will hire 10,000 more metaverse-related employees in the EU. The new name will be unveiled at the company’s developer conference, Connect, on October 28th. Anyway, Happy Birthday Quest, my how you’ve grown, and look at what Accenture bought for your birthday.
Accenture acquires 60,000 Oculus Quest 2 headsets for training. CEO Julie Sweet revealed the immersive technology acquisition during an interview with Fortune. She said the HMDs were acquired for training new hires, as part of a discussion on maintaining the company’s sizable workforce amid remote working and filling more than 125,000 new roles.
Varjo announces Aero, a very high-end prosumer headset. Skarred Ghost says the new $2,000 Aero will be the best high-end prosumer VR headset on the market.
The Glimpse Group (Nasdaq: VRAR) recently acquired their eleventh subsidiary – XR Terra. The education and corporate training company teaches spatial computing tools like game engines to individuals and companies.
The Epic Games Store throws its doors open to NFT games banned from Steam. New crypto mining games like Axie Infinity, are welcome here, says CEO Tim Sweeny. “As long as they don’t break any laws.”
Apple’s mixed reality headset to face production delays due to complex design, says 9to5Mac analyst Ming-Chi Kuo. His sources in Apple’s supply chain say they won’t begin until the fourth quarter of 2022.
Publisher and developer Chicken Waffle, known for its popular “Baby Hands” VR game, is raising money via Equity Crowdfunding site StartEngine.
LA’s Infinity Festival Is Where Hollywood, Games And Silicon Valley Meet, Nov. 2-4. The annual multi-day event celebrates “Story Enabled by Technology.”
Augmented World Expo is on in Santa Clara, November 9-11. The granddaddy of Immersive Media Festivals is back in the real (and online) with over 5,000 fully vaxxed and masked humans live and in person. The conference features over 300 speakers and a 100,000 sf expo floor.
Why The Metaverse Represents A Revolution In Advertising (Max Pinas/Ad Age)
Evolutions: Avatars in the Metaverse (Doug Thompson/Bureau of Bright Ideas)
This Week in XR is now a podcast hosted by Paramount’s Futurist Ted Schilowitz and Charlie Fink, the author of this weekly column. You can find it on podcasting platforms Spotify, iTunes, and YouTube. Watch the latest episode below.
Charlie Fink is an author and futurist focused on spatial computing. See his books here. Spatial Beats contains insights and inputs from Fink’s collaborators including Paramount Pictures futurist Ted Shilowitz.