Facebook wants to replace your workplace with virtual reality


  • Facebook wants to "challenge the distance" thanks to mixed reality

Le teleworking has several advantages. It allows workers to save time, save money, and stop polluting the environment with their daily commutes. By democratizing, it could also make it possible to repopulate rural areas and relieve large cities.

However, teleworking fails to fully restore the work experience in an office. For example, when working from home, it is currently not possible to feel the physical proximity of his colleagues. In addition, the personal environment does not always promote productivity as much as the professional environment.

In order to combine the advantages of teleworking with those of traditional offices, Facebook is betting on mixed reality. During the Oculus Connect 5 conference, the firm demonstrated a prototype of a “virtual office” on its new Oculus Quest wireless headset.

Thanks to mixed reality, a virtual workspace is superimposed on the real environment filmed by the Quest's cameras. So the user is able to see their keyboard while immersed in the virtual world. On the left, a virtual menu allows it to open various applications: Oculus, Messenger, Instagram, Spotify… these applications can of course be replaced by professional software. On the right, a second menu allows you to consult your emails, calendar or "to do list".

Facebook wants to "challenge the distance" thanks to mixed reality

During the demonstration, Facebook Vice President AR / VR Andrew Bosworth notably opened a text document, a web browser window, and a video. Still using virtual reality, he was able to open a Messenger chat with his wife and view photos. Thanks to a physical keyboard connected via Bluetooth, Bosworth was able to edit his text without removing his helmet.

By borrowing a portal, the user finds himself propelled into a virtual meeting room. The opportunity to interact naturally with his employees, and to participate in a meeting from home.

According to Facebook, the aim of this concept is to “challenge the notion of distance”. For now, this virtual office is still in development. It is not known when it will be ready for a launch to the general public. However, this demonstration proves that virtual reality is far from being just for entertainment.

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