Facebook unveils new AR, VR platforms and products

Facebook has launched a new platform for developers today which will enable them to build augmented reality experiences for its in-app cameras. The Facebook founder said the company's next steps would be to bring the digital and physical together and to "work on building common ground". In the future, advancements will include 3D effects, precise location mapping and object recognition.

One way that Facebook's new AR platform will come to life is by allowing developers to layer information cards digitally onto real life objects.

Facebook is planning to tap into augmented reality technology popularised by the hit smartphone game Pokemon Go.

"Augmented reality will help us mix the digital and the physical in new ways", Zuckerberg said during a keynote presentation.

Mr Zuckerberg acknowledged Facebook was slow to realise the potential of the smartphone's camera for use in augmented reality, which was pioneered by rival Snap, the owner of Snapchat, which innovated the use of filters and lenses for photos.

"I used to think glasses were going to be the first mainstream augmented reality platform", he said.

At Facebook's F8 annual developer conference, Facebook and Snapchat's cold war heated up.

Describing the app, Facebook's Social VR head Rachel Franklin said: 'Spending time with friends and family creates many of our most meaningful memories, but it's impossible to always be physically near the people we care about.

New integrations with Facebook's Workplace offering are also aimed at making it easier for users to collaborate using third-party applications such as Microsoft Office, Box, or Salesforce.

Facebook says many effects can be built without the need to write any code. The company this year announced several improvements to the Messenger including new Discover tab which will make it easier for people to find the businesses they care about in Messenger.

Mr Zuckerberg also briefly addressed the Cleveland murder case, in which a man posted video of a fatal shooting on Facebook.

The incident raised questions this week about Facebook's ability to monitor violent material on its site. We use cookies to improve your browsing experience.

Until the past year or so, it seemed like it would be at least another decade before augmented reality would have a chance to become a widely used technology, said Ficus Kirkpatrick, Facebook's director of engineering.