May 28, 2019

Scoop: Startup emerges from the ashes of AR headset maker Meta

Ina Fried, author of Login

Photo: Meta View

A new startup has acquired the assets of defunct augmented reality headset maker Meta. Meta View, as the new company is known, has hired some of the old employees but plans to use the wide-field-of-view headset technology for a particular vertical market (which it isn't identifying).

Why it matters: The once-promising technology has a new home, but its vision of a desktop computer on your face has died with the original Meta. Meta, which had developed two generations of its AR headset, abruptly closed its doors earlier this year.

Details:

  • The CEO is Jay Wright, the former Qualcomm executive who led its Vuforia augmented reality effort, later sold to PTC.
  • The new effort is being funded by Israel's Olive Tree Ventures and BNSG Capital.
  • It has somewhere between 11 and 50 employees, though the company isn't being more specific.

What they're saying: Wright tells Axios that the company is focused on a particular industry, with its planned hardware and software tailored to that market's needs. He contrasted that approach to the rest of the industry, which he said is selling the equivalent of "sporks" rather than a needed utensil. "When you are doing something general purpose, you make all these tradeoffs," he said.

What they're not saying: Meta View isn't saying which market they are targeting or how much funding they have.

  • Wright says he is well aware that most of the current VR industry is also shifting toward business as the consumer market has taken off more slowly than anticipated.
  • "I’m not crazy," he said. "I’ve got a plan."

Go deeper

U.S. cities crackdown on protests against police brutality

Photo: Megan Jelinger/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Major U.S. cities have implemented curfews and called on National Guard to mobilize as thousands of protesters gather across the nation to continue protesting the death of George Floyd.

The state of play: Hundreds have already been arrested as tensions continue to rise between protesters and local governments. Protesters are setting police cars on fire as freeways remain blocked and windows are shattered, per the Washington Post. Law enforcement officials are using tear gas and rubber bullets to try to disperse crowds and send protesters home.

Trump to invite Russia and other non-member G7 countries to summit

President Trump at Cape Canaveral, Florida, on Saturday. Photo: Saul Martinez/Getty Images

President Trump told reporters on Saturday evening he would postpone the G7 summit to September and expand the meeting to more nations that are not members of the Group of 7.

Details: Trump said he would invite Russia, South Korea, Australia and India to the summit, according to a pool report. "I don’t feel that as a G7 it properly represents what’s going on in the world. It’s a very outdated group of countries," he said.

Updated 48 mins ago - Politics & Policy

George Floyd protests: What you need to know

Thousands of protesters march in Denver, Colorado, on May 30. Photo: Michael Ciaglo/Getty Images)

Curfews are being imposed in Portland, Oregon, and Cincinnati, while the governors of Georgia, Kentucky, Ohio and Texas activated the National Guard following unrest in the states, per AP.

The big picture: Floyd's fatal run-in with police is the latest reminder of the disparities between black and white communities in the U.S. and comes as African Americans grapple with higher death rates from the coronavirus and higher unemployment from trying to stem its spread.