Social media pioneer Jack Dorsey fears mixed-reality headsets such as the Apple Vision Pro and the Meta Quest 3 will turn Americans into socially-distant couch potatoes.
The Twitter co-founder said he is concerned that society is heading toward a dystopian future similar to the one depicted in the 2008 Pixar film “WALL-E,” in which people spend their days sitting in mobile floating recliners and stare at virtual screens.
“I’m super worried and concerned with how out of touch it might make people and how it distances us even further,” Dorsey said during an appearance this week on the “Breaking Points” podcast.
“That’s the future we’re driving towards, with everyone in floating chairs, drinking their food out of straws and constant 24-7 entertainment,” Dorsey added. “You can see that the whole world is headed this way.”
Apple joined the battle this month with its “Vision Pro” headset — the company’s first major product launch in nearly a decade — with a $3,499 price tag.
CEO Tim Cook has touted the device as a “spatial computer,” with potential uses including an enhanced virtual meeting experience, interactive sporting event experiences and video gaming.
Meta is set to launch its own, cheaper headset, the Quest 3, later this year.
The device will start at $499 and connect users to Mark Zuckerberg’s version of the metaverse, dubbed “Horizon Worlds.”
Dorsey acknowledged that mixed-reality headsets are “phenomenal for gaming” and represented an “obvious user interfaced evolution” compared to the phones and computers in widespread use today.
Nonetheless, he noted he was “skeptical about some of the benefits” posed by the advanced technology.
“I hope we have an honest conversation about some of the harms around more and more social distancing,” he added.
Dorsey’s remarks came days after Zuckerberg took his own jabs at the Apple Vision Pro during an all-hands meeting with Meta employees last week.
“Every demo that they showed was a person sitting on a couch by themself,” Zuckerberg told employees, according to The Verge.
“I mean, that could be the vision of the future of computing, but like, it’s not the one that I want.”
Zuckerberg contrasted Apple’s device with Meta’s approach to the metaverse, which, he argued, is “fundamentally social” and focused on keeping users “active” rather than pure entertainment.
Source by [New York Post]