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Meta has reportedly canned its dual-camera smartwatch

Meta is still working on other wrist-mounted devices, however.

meta and facebook logo on grey background
Image: Unsplash

Meta has ceased development of its dual-camera smartwatch, as reported by Bloomberg. Originally scheduled to release early next year, it looks like the project is officially over.

The report has more details about the secretive device. The Information was first to report on the smartwatch, codenamed “Milan.” It was focused on fitness and messaging uses according to those early reports.

At the time, we wondered if the smartwatch could be used as a controller with the Quest VR headsets. That was because Facebook had recently bought CTRL-Labs, a startup that was creating arm-based controllers that can read your nerve signals.

four images of meta dual-cam smartwatch prototype
Image: Business Insider

Bloomberg’s report confirmed our suspicions. In part, this was due to the second camera making it difficult for the smartwatch to detect nerve signals coming from the wrist. That means that CTRL-Labs’ tech was inside the smartwatch.

The camera causing the issues was on the bottom of the smartwatch. That seems to be an odd place to put one, but Meta was planning to make it easy to lift the housing from the band. That would have turned it into a more traditional camera, just smaller, with a 12-megapixel sensor.

leaked image of facebook smartwatch
Image: Bloomberg

Another camera was on the watch face, with a 5-megapixel sensor. Perfect for those dreams of super-spy video calling from your wrist. The watch would have also had all the usual smart tech, like GPS, cellular connectivity, and apps. Meta was aiming for an 18-hour battery life.

Now the development of the dual-camera smartwatch is over. Meta hasn’t given up on wrist-based devices. Instead, it’s working on other ways to use CTRL-Labs’ nerve-signal-sensing tech, to remove our reliance on physical accessories when using VR.

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Maker, meme-r, and unabashed geek with nearly half a decade of blogging experience at KnowTechie, SlashGear and XDA Developers. If it runs on electricity (or even if it doesn't), Joe probably has one around his office somewhere, with particular focus in gadgetry and handheld gaming. Shoot him an email at joe@knowtechie.com.

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