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Zuckerberg Previews Next-Level AR Experience in New Cambria Headset Showcase

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Zuckerberg Previews Next-Level AR Experience in New Cambria Headset Showcase

As the metaverse hype train has continued to gather steam, many have questioned where augmented reality will fit into Meta’s bigger picture, as the vast majority of examples we’ve seen thus far relate purely to the VR space.

Today, we got a glimpse of just that:

As you can see in this video, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg is interacting with a digital creature in the real world via Meta’s Presence Platform, its next-level process which enables developers ‘to build experiences that blend virtual content with the physical world’.

Meta unveiled Presence Platform late last year, which incorporates various elements of spatial understanding to facilitate the creation of virtual worlds that interact with your physical space.

Though as you can see in this example, current Quest headsets don’t enable users to interact in full-color experiences, which is where Meta’s next level Cambria headsets will take this to the next stage.

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Meta’s Cambria headsets are scheduled for retail launch later this year, the first of four new VR headset models that Meta’s looking to bring to the market over the next 24 months. The advanced model will include improved external cameras, which will essentially enable them to operate as both a VR and AR device – so like AR glasses, but not quite to the stage where they’re ready to be worn on your face all day long.

That aspect falls to Meta’s ‘Project Aria’, which is focused on everyday usage of AR elements, overlaid on your vision.

Meta’s Ray Ban Stories glasses are the first step in this direction, and the idea is that, eventually, Meta’s VR and AR worlds will merge, via variable devices that can facilitate differing levels of interaction and engagement.

In some ways, it seems like its Ray Ban Stories and related models will be an initial lure to get more people into the VR space. You’ll be able to undertake a range of interactions and processes in your regular AR glasses, but more advanced processes will require a VR headset – and if Meta can make that initial AR experience enticing, that could be a key avenue for increasing VR take-up, and ushering more people into the metaverse space.

Which is why next-level processes like this are so important. Right now, this doesn’t seem like a huge step up from, say, Pokemon Go or other AR experiences, with the capacity to have characters interact with real-world scenes in your view. But there’s a lot more going on here, in regards to depth perception, spatial awareness, its physics engine and more. This example may not look amazing, but eventually, you can expect Meta to come up with some pretty impressive uses of this type of tech.

Remember this classic example from Magic Leap?

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Magic Leap itself never got to this stage. But Meta might, with these new developments moving closer to this next stage of digital overlays on the physical world.

It may not seem like a game-changing preview from Zuck and Co, and it may not be at that next stage as yet. But this is where Meta is increasingly headed, and the possibilities within that are virtually endless.

If you’re wondering how we go from where we are now, to the metaverse being a real thing, this is another step on the path towards that next stage.

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LinkedIn Adds New Features for Company Pages, Including Post Templates and Link Stickers

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LinkedIn has outlined its latest batch of updates for Company Pages, most of which had already been previewed in some capacity, but are now being rolled out on a broader basis.

First off, LinkedIn’s making its new post templates available to all company pages.

LinkedIn post templates

As you can see in these examples, LinkedIn’s post templates, as they sound, provide a range of visual enhancements for your LinkedIn updates, which could help to make them stand out in feeds.

LinkedIn originally launched post templates for individual users last month, but now, it’s making them available for Company Page updates as well.

As per LinkedIn:

Create engaging, actionable LinkedIn content easier than ever with customizable templates, available directly in the LinkedIn app, with no third-party tools required.”

I mean, I don’t know that these types of posts really fit with LinkedIn’s professional approach. But then again, as many have noted, LinkedIn is increasingly becoming more like Facebook anyway, with more personal posts and updates that are less focused on professional aspects.

And that seems to be working – LinkedIn’s parent company Microsoft keeps reporting ‘record levels of engagement’ in the app every quarter, so maybe this is actually a good, valuable addition.

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We’ll see how people feel about it when every other LinkedIn ‘thinkfluencer’ is posting using these templates. You can access post templates in the mobile app by tapping the ‘use template’ option in the post composer menu.

As an addition to this, LinkedIn’s also making its new link stickers available for Company Pages too, which could help to drive more direct response to your updates.

LinkedIn link sticker

On another front, LinkedIn will also now enable all Company Pages to pin comments beneath their brand posts.

LinkedIn Pinned Comments

The rollout for this feature also started last month, with some users seeing the option to pin comments in the app.

That could be a good way to spark more focused engagement, and highlight top fans, while you could also use this to simply boost interactions by pinning the comment with the most engagement at the top of the reply chain.  

As a reminder, LinkedIn Company Pages can also pin an update for similar purpose.

Finally, LinkedIn has also added a new Our featured commitments’ section for Company Pages, where brands will be able to showcase their most important values.

“Increasingly in today’s market, job seekers are evaluating potential employers based on their values. They’re interested in knowing where companies stand on issues that are important to them, such as DEI, work-life balance, sustainability, etc. To provide greater insight and connections, LinkedIn is enabling employers to highlight these commitments on their LinkedIn company page to define their talent brand and values.” 

Brands will be able to include up to five commitments in their featured commitments section, while you’ll also be able to host content that demonstrates the same, all of which will be displayed in a sub-panel in the ‘About’ section of your Page.

These are some potentially handy updates, with the link stickers and pinned comments standing out as likely the most valuable additions for LinkedIn page managers.

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Post templates I’m not as sold on, especially for brands – but then again, there may be ways to use these templates to improve the presentation of your posts, and maybe, that’ll increase overall engagement.

You can read about all of LinkedIn’s latest company page updates here.

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