Image: Avatar VR by Meta / Mark Zuckerberg
Avatars are a central element of the metaverse. Meta improves your own avatars and brings them to more platforms.
A few weeks ago, Meta launched new VR avatars. They are more diverse, customizable and, last but not least, more expressive thanks to an AI algorithm that evaluates body movements and voice pitches and generates appropriate facial expressions.
Since the metaverse, at least in Zuckerberg’s mind, is not limited to virtual reality and augmented reality and on existing ecosystemsMeta is working to expand its own avatars to all of the company’s services and social platforms.
“Virtual Reality and Quest are big parts of our vision for the Metaverse, but we see the Metaverse as a connected digital world that encompasses Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality in addition to more familiar platforms like this. smartphones and computers understand. The introduction of avatars on our platforms is a first step in this direction,” writes Meta in his own blog.
3D avatars for Facebook, Messenger and Instagram
Facebook and Messenger already support 2D avatars that users can create and customize independently from VR avatars.
With the latest update, Meta takes avatars into the third dimension, improves their customization options and appearance, and adds cochlear implants and hearing aids for the hearing impaired, which are also available for VR avatars. the new 3D avatars can be used as a Facebook profile picture and chat sticker, among other things, and can be published in chronicle publications.
3D avatars are also rolling out to Instagram Stories and Instagram’s messaging service for the first time, furthering Meta’s commitment to powering all social networks. Innovations are initially restricted to users in the United States, Canada, and Mexico.
A closet full of avatars
Avatars are not unified: if you wish, you can create separate avatars for VR, Instagram, Facebook and Messenger. It’s on purpose: according to Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook link), it should even be possible one day to choose from a range of avatars, from expressive to photorealistic.
Meta’s research on codec avatars shows what photorealistic alter egos might look like one day. It will probably be a few more years before these are ready for the market, as the technology is in its infancy.
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