Meta says futuristic Mirror Lake VR headset is “practical to build now”
Meta previously teased a render of an advanced headset dubbed ‘Mirror Lake’, but the company says that now this device would be practical to actually build.
Virtual reality headset design has moved on a lot since the release of the original Oculus Rift, with head-mounted devices like the Meta Quest 3 becoming smaller and lighter than they were only a few years ago.
To many users, though, they are still too large and bulky to be comfortable or practical. Last year, Meta showed off a concept that was aimed at overcoming these issues with a render of a proposed headset design called Mirror Lake.
The render of the Mirror Lake concept was shown during a talk by Meta’s Director of Display System Research Douglas Lanman during a talk held at the University of Arizona College of Optical Sciences.
Lanman went on to say that Meta now believes that this advanced headset concept was possible to build with modern processes and materials.
Meta’s Mirror Lake VR headset comes with electronic varifocals
The Mirror Lake is notable due to its lightweight form factor, which appears to resemble an oversized pair of sunglasses or goggles more than the larger VR headsets we are familiar with. In addition to its sleek shell, the Mirror Lake would contain technology such as reverse pass-through that lets outside observers see the eyes and face of the VR user and multi-view eye tracking.
One of the biggest talking points, however, was the mention of ‘holocake’ lenses. These specialist VR lenses have been developed by Meta to create an ‘electronic varifocal’ that can accommodate people who are short or long-sighted, without needing to wear glasses when using the headset.
Despite saying that the device was possible to make with currently available technology, there is little indication that Meta is actively building such a device. Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg suggested that the technology could be seen in products in the “second half of the decade.” meaning enthusiasts may have a long wait before they can use anything like the Mirror Lake.