Meta released a Quest software update via its public test channel (PTC), which lets users opt-in to try new features before they’re pushed out to everyone. Among the v57 PTC update is a feature that’s been notably missing from Meta avatars: legs.
Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg promised at Connect 2022 that its avatars would eventually be getting legs, putting an end to the platform’s characteristic floating torsos at some point in the not-too-distant future. At the time, Zuckerberg showed off his on-stage avatar jumping and kicking, although it was revealed later this was actually created using some fairly common external motion capture tech.
In short, Quest can’t track legs yet, which means the v57 PTC update is packing a pretty standard implementation of inverse kinematics (IK), resulting in the sort of body positioning guesswork you see in apps like VR Chat. Still, nice to see a full body in Quest Home for once, right?
X (formerly Twitter) user Lunayian shows off the new avatar legs after installing the v57 PTC update.
Meta Quest v57 PTC finally adds legs to your Meta avatar :D pic.twitter.com/3dzuuppp6e
— Luna (@Lunayian) August 29, 2023
YouTuber and tech analyst Brad Lynch also tried out the new legs, showing off some of the limitations currently. Notably, you won’t see your avatar’s legs when looking down directly at them—they’re only viewable via the mirror, and ostensibly by other users—and the IK system still doesn’t account for crouching.
According to data mined by X user NyaVR, the v57 PTC update also includes the ability to enable and disable the avatar mirror, a new Horizon Worlds Portal in home, an Airplane Mode, and an Extended Battery Mode.
The comes alongside a wider push to attract more users to Horizon Worlds, as Meta recently took its first steps of ending Quest-exclusivity for the social VR app with the launch of a closed beta on Android mobile devices. It’s also set to arrive on standard PC browsers too at some point.
Additionally, Meta seems to also be investing more in first-party content for Horizon Worlds, having released Super Rumble late last month, a hero shooter which feels more in line with the sort of sticky content that ought to attract and bring users back more regularly.
We’re sure to learn more about Quest software features and Horizon Worlds stuff at the company’s annual Connect developer conference, which takes place September 27th.