Meta Showcases Prototype Haptic Glove, Will Let Users Feel Objects in VR


Meta, formerly Facebook, has demonstrated a prototype of its haptic glove that will let people feel and interact with virtual objects in a digital space. Meta’s Reality Labs research wing is working on the haptic glove as part of the tech giant’s push towards augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR)-focused metaverses. The wearable reproduces sensations in the virtual world such as texture, pressure and vibration. Meta is planning to include haptic gloves with the VR headset and make it compatible with AR glasses in the future.

meta on 16 November Detailed The work that has gone into developing the Haptic Glove as part of his move to enter the metaverse. Meta says that its Reality Labs division has been developing the wearable for the past seven years. Meta is still not sure about the actual time required for the launch of Haptic Gloves. Manufacturing these gloves is a challenge that requires the exploration of an entirely new domain of scientific research, notes the company.

Haptic Gloves can be paired with a VR headset for online multiplayer games. Also, meta eyes to use it alongside AR glasses. “While we are still in the early stages of this research, the goal is to one day pair the gloves with your VR headset to have an immersive experience like a concert or playing a poker game in the metaverse, and eventually, they will work with your AR glasses.” With,” Meta said in the blog post.

As seen in the video shared by Meta, haptic gloves create the wearer’s sensations that mimic the weight and feel of real objects when handling it in virtual space. The prototype of the Haptic Glove is lined with inflatable plastic motors called actuators. These motors are placed on top of the glove in concert to give sensation to the wearer’s hand, including the fingers. This is done with the help of microfluidics which controls the air flow moving the actuators. Meta claims that it is building the world’s first high-speed microfluidic processor for this.

It is also said to be working on advanced hand-tracking technology so that haptic gloves can accurately identify where your hand is in a virtual scene, whether you are in contact with a virtual object, and whether your hand is in contact with the object. How is interacting. ,

When moving a hand, the haptic renderer sends instructions to the actuators on the arm based on its understanding of such things as the location of the hand and the properties (such as texture, weight, and stiffness) of the virtual objects with which the hand comes into contact. ,

“Today gloves are made personally by skilled engineers and technicians who build the subsystem and assemble the gloves largely by hand,” said RL Research Process Engineer Katherine Healy in a separate blog post. “We use semi-automatic processes where we can, but manufacturing these gloves on a large scale will require the invention of new manufacturing processes,” she said.

There are no plans yet for a commercial rollout of Haptic Glove. “While our haptic glove research will remain in the laboratory for now, we are excited about the progress we have made and the potential it shows for a virtual world that you can touch,” the company said in a blog post.