The Meta 2 developer kit has finally begun shipping! Gary Garcia, the senior director of customer success at Meta, just sent out an email that they are shipping out to the first round of preorder customers. Waves will be building from there, up to far higher manufacturing rates near the end of Q1 of 2017.
The Meta 2 is a tethered augmented reality headset priced at $949 plus tax, which is a considerable price difference from its untethered competitor, the Microsoft HoloLens, which is $3,000 at least. Of course, as the word tethered implies, it requires being connected to a computer to function.
Check out the headset in the video below, from Meta on YouTube:
I am sure many who preordered were disappointed when Meta decided back in June to push the release of the Meta 2 dev kits until now. I am also sure many would rather have a working product than have it fast.
Here is the email notice in its entirety:
I'm excited to let you know that we have started shipping the Meta 2 to the first round of customers. When we last touched base in late September, I mentioned that we will ship in larger waves in early 2017; we are still on track for that timeframe. Volume for manufacturing is ramping up, and more systems will be shipped towards the end of Q1 2017.
We will notify you well in advance as we prepare to ship your system, and we will especially let you know when your credit card will be charged. We can't wait to deliver your Meta 2 and see the pioneering apps and experiences you create!
From the Meta family to you and your family, happy holidays!
NextReality had the opportunity to talk to Ryan Pamplin, the VP of sales and partnership, back in September where NextReality writer Adam Dachis learned a good bit about the Meta's very different design philosophy. Check out the full video interview below for more:
For at least some Meta early-adopters, the headset is finally on its way to you—Happy Holidays to you folks that got in early. Now go make something! I am really looking forward to seeing user reviews of the product as well as all of the cool projects that start coming out soon. If you didn't get in on the preorder action yet, you could still do that here.
Did you get in early and order a Meta 2? What do you think about this as a tethered product versus the freedom of the HoloLens? Let us know in the comments below.