Connect with us


Oculus founder Palmer Luckey savages Magic Leap One: REVIEW



palmer luckey

  • After years of hype and over $2 billion in capital
    raised, Florida-based startup Magic Leap launched its first
    device earlier this year: Magic Leap One.
  • The device costs $2,300, and consists of a headset, a
    small wearable computer, and a handheld controller.
  • In a searing review published this week, Oculus VR
    founder and former Facebook executive Palmer Luckey savaged the
  • “Magic Leap needed to really blow people away to
    justify the last few years. The product they put out is
    reasonably solid, but is nowhere close to what they had hyped
    up, and has several flaws that prevent it from becoming a
    broadly useful tool for development of AR applications,”
    wrote, in a review titled “Magic Leap is a Tragic

After years of hype, and more than $2 billion in startup capital,
Florida-based startup Magic Leap finally
released its long-awaited first product
: Magic Leap One.

The $2,300 headset promises to immerse users into a fantastic
world of “mixed reality,” where digital and physical objects
seamlessly blend together.

Early adopters are already putting the device though its paces.
But one early adopter’s review, in particular, is getting a lot
of attention.

Palmer Luckey, the creator of the Oculus virtual reality
headset, published
a review on his website this week
 titled, “Magic Leap is
a Tragic Heap.”

In case the title didn’t make it clear, Luckey is no fan of the
Magic Leap One — he calls the device, “a tragedy in the classical
sense…less of a functional developer kit and more of a flashy
hype vehicle that almost nobody can actually use in a meaningful

Magic Leap One Creator's Edition
The entire Magic Leap One
setup: A small computer (left), the headset (middle), and
controller (right).

Magic Leap

OK, so Luckey obviously has a dog in this fight. As the creator
of the Oculus VR headset, Luckey might well have a motivation
(conscious or not) in tearing down a product that threatens the
Oculus’ position as the pre-eminent headset for the new era of
virtual and mixed reality.

And it’s worth remembering that early versions of the Oculus
headset had many flaws and rough edges, including a propensity to
give some people motion sickness.

Still, with those caveats in mind, it’s worth considering the
specific criticisms Luckey cites in his review:

  1. Both controller tracking and head tracking are inadequate,
    according to Luckey. He takes particular issue with the
    controller tracking, calling it outright “bad.”
  2. The operating system isn’t unique, he wrote. “It is actually
    just Android with custom stuff on top, the same approach most
    people take when they want to claim they have built a whole
    operating system.”
  3. It’s not a big enough jump forward from other options. “It is
    slightly better than Hololens in some ways,” he wrote, “Slightly
    worse in others, and generally a small step past what was state
    of the art three years ago — this is more Hololens 1.1 than
    Consumer AR 1.0.”

Luckey’s review apparently caused a stir at Magic Leap
headquarters, as CEO Rony Abovitz tweeted
a series of oblique references to the “Avatar: The Last
Airbender” show that seemingly paint Luckey as a “bitter, angry,
banished” troublemaker — a reference to his dismissal from
Facebook following a political donation controversy, and
subsequent exit from the virtual and augmented reality business.

Luckey joined Facebook in 2014 after the social networking
company acquired Oculus for $2 billion. Since his unceremonious
departure from Facebook in March 2017
, Luckey has gone on to
found a
new company focused on developing military/defense projects.

Luckey isn’t the only one with a less-than-positive outlook after
using Magic Leap One.

When tech publications got an early look at the device earlier
this month,
many reviews were similarly unflattering
. Investors, too, are

cooling on the imminent prospects of augmented reality
— but, even after $2.3 billion in capital, Magic
Leap is still
open to raising more funding

Continue Reading
Advertisement Find your dream job