Facebook Deals with Plessey to Step Forward in Achieving its Augmented Reality Eyewear Goal

Facebook is working to bring evolution for social networks through VR and to reach that next level, it is focusing on AR as well. Recently, Facebook has moved ahead in the AR race by finalizing a deal with Plessey, a microLED providing company which will give the key component needed to make AR glasses a reality.

Plessey, while sharing the news said, they are working with Facebook to help them achieve their goals of upcoming computing platforms that will be centered on people. A commercial agreement has been signed according to which the LED manufacturing operations will work closely with the social media platform, helping Facebook prototype and develop new technologies that will be then used to achieve the AR/VR vision.

Plessey added that the breakthrough research and consumer devices like Oculus Quest make Facebook the most potential company to convert the consumer-ready AR glasses into reality.

A few years ago, Google Glass was somewhat able to achieve the results and Snap Inc. has also been trying, but it seems Facebook could be the one to create viable, fashionable and accessible AR glasses.

Some of the reports suggest that Apple had also tried to fix a deal with Plessey as the company is also working on Project StartBoard augmented reality glasses, which were expected to be launched in Q2 2020. Plessey is one of the very few renowned companies with microLED technology that is required for AR overlays. After setting up a deal with Facebook, it looks like now the social media giant is ahead in the game of AR.

At the F8 developer conference in 2016, Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg talked for the first time about the AR glasses prototype that the company was working on. He shared some of the images of the glasses along with highlighting its potential applications.


In 2019, Facebook’s patent details were revealed, showing how the AR glasses would work. The work has been in progress since 2017 and there has been a substantial advancement in its AR glasses. The agreement with Plessey suggests the Facebook is near in achieving its goals but the process may slow down or get delayed due to the global pandemic.

AR technology has the potential to change the overall experience with the real world by providing instant information about various objects in surroundings like location, health reminders, messages, etc. and also new means of advertising.

Walgreens, a retail giant is also testing AR applications which would be used to show the discount or deal offers available in store. It might not be very comfortable to instantly see a discount ad in front of you while you are standing in a store thus, there would be strict user control measures.

However, whenever the AR glasses would come out, they are going to change the consumers’ purchase journey with several opportunities.


Photo: Plesseysemiconductors

Read next: The (Older Than You Think) History Of Augmented And Virtual Reality

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