Meta, the augmented reality startup that shut down in January, is coming back — or at least, its tech is. A new enterprise referred to as Meta View has bought the old Meta’s assets, which have been sold when Meta’s creditor unexpectedly foreclosed on its loan. The new enterprise will be led by former Qualcomm executive Jay Wright, and it is constructing “a complete hardware and software solution for a specific use case” rather than a generalist AR headset.
Wright presided more than Qualcomm’s Vuforia augmented reality computer software platform, which was sold in 2015 to Internet of Things enterprise PTC. Investor Olive Tree Ventures says he was selected to style “a product that marries both technology capabilities and market need, driving real value.” A spokesperson elaborated slightly, confirming that Meta View would develop on Meta’s current show technologies with its wide field of view. Meta View will continue to help the old Meta two headset, but it will no longer sell new units.
Olive Tree Ventures basic companion Mayer Gniwisch describes the firm as “extremely bullish” on the future of augmented reality and spatial computing. “Our belief was so strong that we did a somewhat non-traditional VC deal to acquire the assets, start a new company, and find a new CEO with a vision and focus we believed in,” Gniwisch says. The “non-traditional” deal seemingly refers to the foreclosure. Back in January, Meta CEO Meron Gribetz recommended Meta’s bank had sold the enterprise out from below him.
The old Meta was one particular of AR’s greatest-recognized players the $949 Meta two was consistently described as a competitor to Magic Leap or Microsoft HoloLens hardware. But the Trump administration’s trade war with China triggered a significant would-be investor to pull out, and the enterprise massively downsized, delaying the launch of new headsets and laying off practically all staff. AR headsets, in basic, haven’t created a leap to mainstream audiences they’re restricted largely to industrial or academic use and a handful of public-facing applications like museum tours.
But businesses can succeed inside that space. Google just turned its Glass headset into an official item, for instance. Wright has years of knowledge operating in AR at established businesses, and Meta View may perhaps be in a fantastic position to uncover a sustainable niche — though it could possibly be significantly less aspirational and much more down-to-Earth than its predecessor.