It’s clear Facebook is working on all-day AR headsets, and although they still aren’t showing any hardware just yet, company CEO Mark Zuckerberg mentioned today at Facebook Connect 2021 that it’s indeed still full steam ahead on its first “fully-fledged augmented reality glasses,” revealing the code name ‘Project Nazare’.
“The ultimate goal here is true augmented reality glasses. And we’ve been working on that too,” Zuckerberg says. “Today I want to show you can experience that we’ve been working on for Project Nazare, which is the code name for our first full augmented reality glasses.”
In a short simulated concept, Zuckerberg narrates a typical scene where users message over Whatsapp and organize a game night. Avatars of friends pop into the user’s field of view, and gaming commences.
There’s a long ways to go to create the hardware’s desired form-factor, Zuckerberg says, hinting that the glasses will be about 5mm thick, or just over 3/16 inches.
“There’s a lot of technical work to get this form-factor and experience right. We have to fit hologram displays, projectors, batteries, radios, custom silicon chips, cameras, speakers, sensors to map the world around you and more into glasses that are about 5mm thick. So we still have a ways to go with Nazare, but we’re making good progress.”
The company also demoed a series of assistant-related smart home experiences enabled by Project Aria, the company’s sensor-rich headset prototype which went into testing last year. Notably though, Aria doesn’t include any sort of AR display, so it’s more of a stepping stone to the sort of compact AR glasses the company appears to be shooting for. Project Nazare sounds like it may be building on that research, although it’s not clear at what stage of productization they’ve reached.
“Our first fully-fledged AR glasses — Project Nazare — are still a few years out,” the company says in a blog post, “but we’re excited by the progress we’ve made and look forward to the road ahead.”