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Meta Kills Smartwatch Plans, Delays AR Glasses

Facebook parent company Meta has scrapped development of a smartwatch with two cameras that was touted as an Apple Watch rival, as well as delaying the release of its forthcoming augmented reality glasses.

According to Bloomberg’s “person with knowledge of the matter”, Meta is instead focusing its energies on “other devices for the wrist”.

Work on the smartwatch, codenamed ‘Milan’, was a fair way along, having reached the prototype stage after two years of development.

It contained a feature for translating nerve signals from the wrist into digital commands, a process called electromyography. The cameras in the watch were reportedly hampering this feature.

“This is about decoding those signals at the wrist — the actions you’ve already decided to perform — and translating them into digital commands for your device,” Meta explained in a blog post earlier this year.

The device was planned for the second quarter of 2023, with a price point of A$495.

Meta also pushed back the release of its augmented reality glasses, telling employees that it will scrap glasses that have been in the works for three years, instead ” shifted focus to a later version of those AR glasses, with plans for an eventual commercial release”, according to Bloomberg’s source.

This is likely all part of a larger cost cutting exercise, with Meta executives saying on an April earnings call that annual expenses will decrease by US$3 billion in 2022.

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