Facebook is currently developing a voice assistant that could function similar to Amazon Alexa, Siri, or Google Assistant. Notably, it’s intended to support Oculus headsets in addition to Portal, and “future products.”

Citing several sources familiar with the matter, a CNBC report broke the news yesterday that Facebook is looking to compete with the big platform holders with its own voice assistant.

A Facebook spokesperson later confirmed so much in a Reuters report, saying:

“We are working to develop voice and AI assistant technologies that may work across our family of AR/VR products including Portal, Oculus and future products.”

With little else to go on, it’s still unclear how Facebook intends to implement the AI assistant, and what tasks it will handle in respect to VR users. However if it’s slated to be a multi-product implementation, it could mean wide-reaching abilities similar to what the top voice assistants can achieve today.

Oculus Job Posts Point to Facebook-built AR Headset on the Horizon

Facebook’s upcoming assistant won’t be a first on Oculus devices when it finally arrives though. In March 2017, Oculus released its ‘Oculus Voice’ service, a basic voice input system which includes the ability to perform voice searches from Oculus Home to navigate games, apps, and experiences. It’s still a far cry from saying “Hey Oculus, remind me in 45 minutes to start dinner,” something an integrated voice assistant service might address.

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Well before the first modern XR products hit the market, Scott recognized the potential of the technology and set out to understand and document its growth. He has been professionally reporting on the space for nearly a decade as Editor at Road to VR, authoring more than 3,500 articles on the topic. Scott brings that seasoned insight to his reporting from major industry events across the globe.
  • kuhpunkt

    No, thank you.

  • Justos

    if it operates as a built-in alexa, im down. Hopefully its actually useful

  • killdozer

    what could go wrong

  • Graham J ⭐️

    Real headline: “Facebook realizes voice isn’t part of personal data it slurps up, plans fix for suckers who buy their hardware”

  • jj

    can we not?

  • Trenix

    Voice recognition never works optimally.

  • I agree. Anything that could potentially replace keyboard input for VR is a step forwards for immersion. Check out Voice Attack and Elite Dangerous.

    • jj

      VA in elite is life changing. People just don’t want fb to analyze anything of theirs at this point because of their history with misusing the data they collect.

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  • Who’s this?

    Great except for the “Facebook” part. Microsoft, Google, and Amazon are bad enough already, this only gets worse huh.

  • Voice assistants market is growing a lot: this interest by Facebook is no surprise to me

  • TC_Orygun

    I’m not happy about this at all. Facebook has been outed over and over as violators of our privacy, and I don’t trust them at all. I’ll move away from Oculus products if this is mandatory.

    • jj

      I like how despite what you said being 100% true, every just smiles and keeps going. dystopian future here we come