Meta halts development of its two camera smartwatch

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Meta, Facebook’s parent company, has decided to discontinue the development of its two-camera smartwatch codenamed “Milan,” according to a Bloomberg source.

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes

A quick rundown of the smartwatch’s specifications included basic features found in other smartwatches such as activity tracking, messaging, and music playback. WiFi, GPS, and cellular connectivity via eSIM were among the connectivity options. There was also a dual-camera setup. One 5-megapixel camera was located beneath the display, and the other 12-megapixel camera was located on the underside of the watch, sitting against your skin on your wrist.

An early look at the Meta smartwatch
An early look at the Meta smartwatch.

As strange as that may appear, there is a reason why a camera was placed in that location. The second camera was designed for users to detach the watch face from the watchbands and take pictures. Unfortunately, this caused a problem with another feature that Meta planned to use with this second camera. The function aimed to convert nerve signals from the wrist to digital commands. The technical term for this is “electromyography.”

“Decoding those signals at the wrist — the actions you’ve already decided to perform — and translating them into digital commands for your device.”

Meta

In layman’s terms, the watch would serve as a controller for other metaverse devices.

Meta had been working on this smartwatch for the past two years, and it was shaping up to be a competitor to the Apple Watch, with a US$349 price tag and a release date of spring 2023. This halt is most likely due to cost-cutting measures, as Meta executives stated on an earnings call that annual expenses would be reduced by US$3 billion this year.

While the concept sounded interesting on paper, it would have been worth seeing it in person if it were to be released in 2023. What are your thoughts on Meta’s decision to halt the development of their smartwatch? Let us know on social media using the buttons below.

Last Updated on June 10, 2022.

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