Hand tracking upgrade 2.1 coming to Quest 2

Hand tracking upgrade 2.1 coming to Quest 2

Hand Tracking 2.0 for Meta Quest 2 rolled out in the spring. Users can look forward to another upgrade coming soon.

With Hand Tracking 2.0, optical hand and finger tracking took a big leap forward in quality. This kind of input is more reliable across the board, less prone to dropouts, and can detects partially obscured or quickly moving hands. It also offers better recognition of gestures like pinching, grasping, and jabbing.

VR games in particular benefit from hand over controller input, as MIXED colleague Jan noted in his Hand Tracking 2.o review. If you want to experience it yourself, you can try it out in Meta’s demo of the software. It is supposed to reflect the current state of the art. While Hand Tracking 2.0 has so far been reserved for Meta Quest 2, the technology will roll out to the first Meta Quest starting in October.

What Hand Tracking 2.1 will bring

During Meta Connect 2022, Meta announced a new incremental update: Hand Tracking 2.1.

In a developer session, Meta engineer Randi Cabezas goes over the improvements the upgrade brings. It includes “changes throughout our tracking stack that further improve tracking reliability, enable better extrapolation, and strengthen our pinch gesture detection.”

To minimize or eliminate tracking interruptions, Meta accelerated the reinitialization of tracking after dropouts. This results in faster “recovery” and fewer interruptions overall, as illustrated by the video above from the presentation.

Rolling out soon

Another improvement has been made with the introduction of a new dedicated AI model that improves hand pose detection. The artificial neural network allows for a more accurate match of virtual and physical hands. “This in turn means fewer overshoots and smoother hand poses,” says Cabezas.

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Last but not least, Meta improved pinch gesture recognition. This reduces erroneous capture, even under difficult conditions.

Hand Tracking 2.1 is rolling out to Meta Quest 2 and Meta Quest Pro by the end of the year.

You can watch the full video presentation on Facebook.