Facebook announced the acquisition of Within only one day after rebranding as Meta (and ditching the Oculus brand in an unceremonious manner). Supernatural, a Beat Saber-style training programme developed by the Los Angeles startup, has become one of the major success stories in virtual reality fitness, featuring movement-based high-impact cardio routines.
It’s a smart move for the corporation as it attempts to expand its VR and other goals into a metaverse. Supernatural was undoubtedly a popular item during the last year and a half, as more individuals turned to home options in the face of widespread gym closures and other fitness restraints.
“We’re delighted because our relationship with Meta means we’ll have more resources to develop and provide you, even more, music, innovative workouts, features, and social VR experiences.” In a blog post, Within CEO Chris Milk and Head of Fitness Leanne Pedante stated, “Of course, we will continue to publish new routines every single day.”
After the acquisition, the company’s existing staff of instructors, choreographers, and managers will continue onboard. Meta’s Reality Labs subsidiary will be home to Supernatural.
In a second article, Meta’s VP of Play Jason Rubin said, “Together, we will also investigate methods to expand future hardware to enable VR fitness applications, enabling other developers to bring new fitness experiences to VR.” “We expect that fitness will be a huge success in VR, with a variety of third-party fitness apps succeeding.
Within was founded in 2015 and has secured more than $50 million in funding, including a $40 million Series B round in 2017. Temasek and Emerson Collective lead that round. Andreessen Horowitz, 21st Century Fox, Raine Ventures, WPP, and Macro Ventures are among the other investors.
Supernatural, a Beat Saber-style VR software for the Oculus Quest and Quest 2, has introduced a new technique to smash a target: your fists. Boxing is the most recent Supernatural workout, and it, like the first bat-oriented “Flow,” burns up a sweat while being enjoyable.
Supernatural Flow is a game that combines Beat Saber and high-intensity interval training (HIIT). Each exercise will take anything from seven minutes to an hour, and you’ll be guided through the session by an enthusiastic coach who will yell encouragements in your ear and cheer you on as you dance, lunge, squat, and slaughter targets with your VR bats.
The problem with Supernatural, at least for me, is that you can plateau. The workout, like HIIT, is hard on the knees and it’s easy to get stuck doing workouts that get the heart rate up but don’t actually build your cardio health or muscle. I started cycling and lifting weights to push myself more and give my knees a rest.
Importantly, neither of these events occurred in the Supernatural app. Since April 2020, Supernatural has introduced two more workouts: Guided Meditation and Recover (stretching), however, they don’t feel as compelling as the original Flow programme. Boxing is the third new workout to be released today and the first to be designed to get the heart beating like the original.
Virtual reality boxing isn’t a novel way to be in shape. On Oculus Quest, Thrill of the Fight and Knockout League both have rabid followers that utilise them for cardio. However, certain games, like Beat Saber, are used to exercise. In Supernatural, boxing is mostly used as a workout.
You’re supposed to hit black targets with your left hand and white targets with your right while black and white targets fly towards your face. Depending on whether you’re intended to jab, uppercut, or hurl a hook at them, the targets will seem differently. To dodge them, glowing bars spin toward your face, forcing you to tilt left or right or complete a full bob and weave.