Meta's VR hand tracking has come a long way in two years. The company has upgraded its Presence Platform hand tracking support for Quest headset apps to allow considerably more natural gestures, particularly those involving hand-over-hand interactions. You can now clap your hands, provide a truer-to-life thumbs-up and deliver high-fives — you can show your appreciation without reaching for your controllers.
The update also provides more consistent tracking, including for fast movements like waving. Meta chalked up the improvements to new AI-based approaches, including deep learning that's better at understanding your hand poses when the cameras have only a limited view.
It will take a while before Quest apps can take full advantage of the improved hand tracking, although Meta is promising relatively little work. However, it's easy to see the practical improvements. Many VR apps ask you to avoid certain gestures. After this upgrade, though, you can use your hands more like you would in real life. Don't be surprised if you see more apps and games that let you go controller-free.