Headspace brings meditation to Meta Quest

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Mindfulness and meditation apps have tremendous potential in the world of extended reality. The full immersion created by headsets like the Meta Quest and Apple Vision Pro offer great potential to kickstart such practices, which are notoriously difficult to both begin and maintain.

As such, partnership between leading meditation app Headspace and Quest-maker Meta is a no-brainer. This morning, the companies announced a collaboration with multimedia design firm, Nexus Studios, that customizes the experience for extended reality headsets.

The fittingly named Headspace XR features practices guided by the app’s mindfulness/meditation instructors, Dora Kamau and Kessonga Giscombe. If you’ve ever used Headspace, Calm or the like (or just experienced guided meditation of any sort), you’re likely familiar with the approaches, including breathing exercises, body scans, mood tracking and the like. They’re all designed to help recenter the user’s focus.

Image Credits: Headspace

There’s also a community element here, presumably for those who need a little external encouragement to maintain a consistent practice. These are backdropped against colorful, metaverse-style environments, where users can interact and play games. At very least, the experience seems engaging in a way not normally associated with meditation apps. This could, perhaps, go a ways toward bringing users back – how it will translate to an effective, regular practice is another question. Clearly the firms wanted to offer something beyond just meditation.

“Research shows that when humans play, our brains are activated in a way that can impact overall life satisfaction and emotional well-being. Unfortunately, our day-to-day lives are often stripped of this opportunity,” Headspace VP Sara Cohen says in a release.

So, gaming as a gateway to mindfulness is the apparent hook here. At very least, improving moods through social activities seems like an achievable short term goal.

While coupling a subscription fee with a free app is pretty standard in the industry, Headspace is opting instead for an upfront fee of $30. The app is available now for Meta Quest 3, Meta Quest 2 and Meta Quest Pro.

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