- Mark Zuckerberg introduces photorealistic avatars on the Lex Fridman podcast.
- Codec Avatars, the tech behind the reveal, aims for real-time lifelike avatars.
- While the general public may have to wait around three years for such tech, future versions might use simple smartphones for scans.
September 29, 2023: In the Lex Fridman podcast dated September 28, Mark Zuckerberg, the face behind Meta, showcased an avatar technology that has amazed many.
This wasn’t just any ordinary show; both Zuckerberg and computer scientist Lex Fridman used lifelike avatars for their hour-long conversation, all happening within the metaverse, thanks to Meta’s Quest 3 headsets and noise-canceling headphones.
In the past, Meta had been the butt of jokes for its heavy metaverse investments, which some felt only produced cartoonish results. But this particular demonstration has garnered respect and admiration, especially among X (Twitter) users.
Mr. Beast commented, “Wow, since when did we go from 3 pixel avatars to this! What the hell did I miss 😭,” indicating a shift from earlier distrust. Jelle Prins, a coder, shared, “9 minutes into Lex / Mark metaverse podcast I forgot I was watching avatars.”
Wow, since when did we go from 3 pixel avatars to this! What the hell did I miss 😭— MrBeast (@MrBeast) September 28, 2023
During the interaction, Fridman was taken aback by how real Zuckerberg’s avatar felt, even saying, “I’m already forgetting that you’re not real.”
The tech highlighted is named Codec Avatars and has been a part of Meta’s plan since 2019. The aim? Create real-time, photorealistic avatars via headsets with facial tracking capabilities.
Yet, for regular users, there’s a waiting period. As per Zuckerberg, the current version requires expensive machine-learning software and specific head scans using equipment equipped with more than 100 cameras.
This might be accessible to all in about three years. The future looks brighter, as Zuckerberg envisions such scans as possible with just an everyday smartphone.
This big reveal was followed by another Meta announcement – the introduction of “Meta AI“, their latest AI assistant. This will span across various chatbots, apps, and innovative smart glasses.
Watch the full episode: