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The Meta Quest 3 will get an exciting new type of app

A Windows app extends into 3D space via a Meta Quest 3 VR headset.
A Windows app extends into 3D space via a Meta Quest 3 VR headset. Microsoft

At Build 2024, Microsoft announced it partnered with Meta to extend Windows apps into 3D space with the help of a Quest VR headset. When working on physical objects, it’s important to have spatial awareness of components.

Microsoft and Meta have been working together on VR solutions for quite some time, and Microsoft Office apps are now available in the Quest Store. You can open Word, Excel, and PowerPoint to get work done in a Meta Quest 3 on virtual screens. However, these flat panels don’t really take advantage of what’s possible in virtual reality.

Microsoft’s latest plans sound much more interesting. The Windows Developer Blog promises to “make Windows a first-class experience on Quest devices.” Windows Volumetric apps can extend into 3D space, allowing users to manipulate virtual objects with their hands.

A person holds a virtual Xbox controller in VR.
A person holds a virtual Xbox controller in VR. Microsoft

Microsoft will provide a volumetric API to use for this interaction. That means developers will need to create new apps or add these features to existing apps before you’ll be able to make use of this new concept. In the meantime, you can still connect your Quest 3 to a Windows PC to view multiple virtual windows with apps like Immersed and Virtual Desktop.

The mention of Meta Quest was brief as Microsoft had dozens of exciting AI and Windows topics to cover, including several big Copilot AI enhancementsreal-time video translation for Edge, and the awesome new Copilot+ PCs.

Microsoft and Meta have worked together before and have been planning on deeper integration since Meta Connect 2022 when Meta announced its Quest Pro, a work-centric VR headset. Some of the plans mentioned in 2022 arrived late in 2023, so it could take months to see any progress on Microsoft Volumetric apps.

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Alan Truly
Alan is a Computing Writer living in Nova Scotia, Canada. A tech-enthusiast since his youth, Alan stays current on what is…
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