Explanation: What is Horizon Workrooms, the first launch of Facebook under the metaverse?

During a conversation about profits in July, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg spoke eloquently about the metaverse, his new ambitious initiative. “Apart from the fact that the metaworld will be the next generation of the Internet, it will also be the next chapter for us as a company. And in the coming years, I expect people to move from perceiving us, mainly as a social media company, to a meta-universe company, ”he said.

He simply made it clear that the company’s future goes far beyond its current project of creating a set of connected social applications and certain equipment to support them. To make it clear, Facebook will try to create a maximalist interconnected set of experiences directly from science fiction – the world known as the metaverse. Invented Snow disaster, a 1992 science-fiction novel by Neil Stevenson, is about bringing together physical, augmented, and virtual reality in a shared online space.

Facebook soon launched an open beta version of Horizon Workrooms, the future of home work and telecommuting, according to its announcements on the meta universe. Horizon Workrooms is a VR workplace.

Of course, Horizon Workrooms is Facebook’s first major step toward Zuckerberg’s imaginary metaverse, an all-encompassing alternate reality that combines the real world with digital imaginations and enhancements.

Horizon Workrooms is a virtual reality (VR) program for remote collaboration. Think of it as a three-dimensional virtual office that can be accessed with the Oculus VR headset. The platform is based on the Horizon platform, which is still undergoing very limited beta testing by invitation only.

The basic concept is that instead of video conferencing with a webcam, participants use virtual reality equipment – such as Facebook’s own Oculus Quest 2 – to meet in a VR workspace. Spatial sound processing makes your colleagues’ voices closer or farther, depending on how close you “sit” to each other in cyberspace. It consists of several components that copy the activities you would perform in a real office, and allows multiple participants to join via VR or video.

There is also the usual added factor of immersion in virtual reality. Workrooms support the usual functions of teleconferencing – whiteboards, screen sharing, chat, and virtual tables. “Worrooms will not use your work conversations and materials to advertise on Facebook,” says the company, and it is also working to limit the amount of data that leaves your office or home office.

Another feature offered by Workrooms is multi-layered mixed reality, which includes “pass-through” video from Quest 2 sensors; participants can look “through” a virtual reality headset to see a grainy image in shades of gray of what is happening to them in the real world.

Facebook promises that neither it nor third-party applications will be allowed to access, view or use images and videos from your real environment to target advertising. For those who don’t have their VR equipment on hand or don’t want to use it, you can call your work rooms with a standard webcam and microphone and appear on a virtual TV screen in your workspace. Studios support up to 50 people on call, 16 of whom can be in full virtual reality.

“Using features such as desktop and mixed reality keyboard tracking, hand tracking, remote desktop streaming, video conferencing integration, spatial audio and new Oculus avatars, we have created a different kind of performance,” the company’s blog said. of Oculus.

He added that Facebook already uses Horizon Workrooms for its meetings.

Horizon Workrooms means the evolution of VR as a collaboration tool in the workplace and is becoming an important part of communication technology. In addition, the beta version of Workrooms has become available for download in the Oculus store.

Facebook’s virtual reality and augmented reality strategy applies not only to consumer products, but also to the concept of the metaverse, where we play and work.

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