Sunday, April 21, 2024

How to turn hand and eye tracking on and off on Meta Quest Pro

The Meta Quest Pro is a powerful virtual reality headset that packs some serious tech into its shiny frame. Nestled within the Quest Pro headset are not only the inside-out tracking cameras, but also colour passthrough cameras, eye-tracking cameras and more.

Some of the most useful features of this headset’s tracking capabilities are turned off as standard and need to be turned on to make the most of them. You might prefer these things are turned off for privacy reasons, but if you’d rather make the most of the hardware then follow our guide to turn things on.

How to turn on hand tracking

How to turn on hand tracking on the Quest Pro

Like the Meta Quest 2, the Meta Quest Pro has the ability to track your hands if you want it to.

The Meta Quest Pro controllers are pretty fantastic, but if you want to get more hands-on in virtual reality, then hand tracking can be useful. Whether that’s when the batteries are running low on the controllers or just when you want to make the most of the hand tracking in specific apps.

Hand tracking isn’t turned on by default though, so you’ll need to tweak a few settings to get it working. Luckily it’s really easy to do just that by following these steps:

  1. Turn your headset on and put it on
  2. Then press the menu button on the right controller
  3. When the menu pops up, click the settings cog on that menu
  4. Then through the settings click on the “Movement tracking” option
  5. In there navigated to “hand tracking” and click to turn it on

Once you turn it on, you’ll be guided through a mini tutorial to show you how it works.

Mostly in the Quest Pro menus, you’ll find the controls involve a lot of pinching and swiping movements that are fairly intuitive.

The hand tracking controls are also designed so you can still access the menus that you’d normally have access to on each of the hardware controllers. These controls involve you turning your hands over (towards you) and pinching your index finger and thumb together.

In the settings, there are also options to turn on auto-switching so the headset will swap between the controllers and hand tracking when you put the controllers down. We noted that this seems to work best when you dock the controllers to charge so they’re well out of the way.

How to setup Meta Quest Pro hand tracking passthrough

Turning on passthrough shortcuts

The Meta Quest Pro has passthrough cameras that allow you to see the outside world without taking the headset off. You can turn passthrough on and off via the settings menu easily enough but there’s another shortcut that we’d recommend turning on too and this allows you to simply double-tap the headset to switch it on and off.

how to turn on passthrough

To turn on the passthrough gesture you’ll need to head over to the settings again:

  1. Press the settings button on your controller to access the pop-up menu
  2. Click on the settings cog at the bottom of the screen
  3. Look for “Guardian” settings and navigate to that
  4. Find the option for “double-tap for passthrough” and turn it on

Once this setting is on all you need to do is quickly double-tap on the side of your headset to turn the colour passthrough cameras on and see your real world. To turn it off again simply repeat the double-tap. This will make your life a lot easier whenever you need to re-orientate yourself.

eye tracking

Adjusting eye-tracking settings

The Quest Pro has both eye and facial tracking capabilities. Eye tracking is used to monitor the direction your eye is looking and translate that into VR for use on your avatar for a natural look and eye contact.

It’s also used to help improve the image quality within the area where you are looking in VR. This is known as foveated rendering, where the system renders the point in image in front of your gaze at the best quality while your surroundings are given less importance.

This theoretically leads to a better experience in VR as the gameplay can be smoother and well as crisper.

Meta says that the data captured in eye tracking is not used to identify you in any way. It also says that:

“The raw image data is deleted from your headset after the abstracted gaze data has been generated. The abstracted gaze data is continuously generated and overwritten in real time as it provides this feature.”

You can find out more about that here and read Meta’s privacy policy too. Still, eye tracking is turned off by default. So if you want to make the most of it you need to turn it on. To do this:

  1. Press the settings button on your controller to access the pop-up menu
  2. Click on the settings cog and look for movent tracking
  3. Click to turn eye tracking on
  4. Then click to calibrate eye tracking

The calibration will show you a series of objects to look at and follow in VR. This is worth doing as it will calibrate the tracking tech and help it account for glasses, contact lenses and different eyes. So it’s personalised to you.

Eye tracking can be used in apps and in menus and in various other ways, so it’s worth trying. But if you’re worried about privacy you can turn it off by accessing the settings and simply switching it off.

How to turn off facial tracking

Another thing the Quest Pro is able to do is to track facial expressions. This is a useful setting if you’re keen on face-to-face VR experiences like virtual meetings, chat apps or social experiences.

The facial tracking and eye tracking is then used to translate your expressions and eye movement into the virtual world so you have a natural looking avatar and a more personal experience.

It might be that you don’t like the idea of your face being tracked though. Not to worry as you can turn it off in the settings. It’s worth noting that Meta also has a privacy policy on this.

To turn face tracking on or off, head over to the Quest Pro settings:

  1. Press the settings button on your controller to access the pop-up menu
  2. Click on the settings cog at the bottom of the screen
  3. Find and select movement tracking
  4. Choose natural facial experiences and enable or disable it


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