Meta just announced its new Quest 3 headset, which it calls a huge step forward — not just for the Quest lineup, but for Meta’s entire vision for the future. The Quest 3 isn’t just a virtual reality headset like the Quest 2, but rather a mixed reality device like Apple’s Vision Pro.

This means that you can see what’s happening in the real world and interact with things around you while wearing a headset. The Quest 3 starts at $499.99.

The lenses in the Quest 3 are the best Meta has supplied, with a 2064 x 2208 LCD in front of each eye, similar to the Quest Pro. The Quest 3’s viewing angle is 110 degrees horizontally and 96 degrees vertically, about 15 percent more than the Quest 2 and slightly better than the Pro.

The lenses can be adjusted using the new wheel on the outside of the headset, and this should make it easier to find.

The most important difference is the cameras: the two new full-color cameras on the front of the headset provide vastly improved end-to-end video. It is now possible to choose between a fully immersive virtual reality mode or a so-called “mixed” mode. It allows you to see both the real environment and any game or content in the headset.

To switch between modes, you can use the controller or simply double-tap with two fingers.

The headset itself is slightly smaller and actually slightly heavier than the previous model (515 grams versus 503 for the Quest 2).

In terms of what the Quest 3 is adapted for, Meta seems to still be looking at it as a gaming device. It has Roblox, Assassin’s Creed Nexus, and Asgard’s Wrath 2 games.

Meta is also introducing it as a fitness and wellness device that has become a surprise hit in virtual reality thanks to apps like Supernatural.

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