Meta (formerly Facebook) is offering up $700,000 in cash prizes this month in an XR hackathon aimed at developers and creators from all over the world. The objective: choose between Spark AR and Presence Platform and build something cool and useful.

Starting on November 9th and ending on November 22nd, Meta is challenging developers to create something with either of its latest XR tools, Spark AR or mixed reality Presence Platform.

Presence Platform is a suite of new capabilities that will enable developers to build more immersive mixed-reality experiences, like Dominik Hackl’s Magic Keys prototype which teaches you piano by visually serving up notes like a rhythm game.

This category is undoubtedly a bid to get developers interested in building novel usecases for the company’s upcoming Project Cambria mixed reality headset, which will put a heavy focus on hand tracking and passthrough AR interactions in addition to VR.

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On the purely AR end of the spectrum, Spark AR’s toolset was initially all about getting devs to create AR face filters for mobile, but in the coming age of Meta’s Project Nazare AR glasses, it’s steadily expanding with more features.

Image courtesy Meta

Spark AR will soon support geo-mapped experiences for public spaces for location-based AR experiences, which offer a trove of things like Pokémon Go-style games, treasure hunts, public AR art installations, etc.

Meta says it’s “working toward fully-featured AR glasses” and hopes the new capabilities of Spark AR will “illuminate the path to AR glasses,” so funny face filters probably won’t cut it.

According to the XR Hackathon rules, teams will be judged on:

  • Quality, Creativity, Originality of the Idea
  • Strategic Impact in / on Product Category (as determined by Judges)
  • Overall Implementation of Idea including: how well the idea was executed, extent to which the Presence platform or Spark features were leveraged, extent to which respect for user privacy was considered or incorporated in the design

Make sure to register here before November 9th to participate, and you might just nab the top category-specific prize of $55,000.

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  • Ad

    I thought they spent $10 billion this year on “the metaverse.”

    • xyzs

      It’s true that this sounds light compared to these claims.
      However it’s still good for tooling feedback and developing ideas.

  • Lhorkan

    Classic AR – we got cool tech but we don’t know what to actually do with it. This was basically my job for the past year, working at a large company wanting to get in on AR. Come on Facebook, surely you got ideas of your own if you’re that keen on developing the tech?

  • Sven

    Reminder that Facebook doesn’t own the name Meta and shouldn’t be referred to as such unless the actual company gives over the name.