According to reports by The Verge, Facebook is intending to rename the corporation next week to reflect its focus on establishing the metaverse.
On October 28th, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg will speak about the upcoming name change at the company’s annual Connect conference. By rebranding its main app as one of many under a parent company that also oversees Instagram, WhatsApp, Oculus, and other companies, the new name will aim to recast Facebook’s focus on building the “metaverse” rather than as a social media company.
According to Wikipedia, the term “metaverse” is made up of the prefix “meta” and the stem “verse,” and it is frequently used to describe a future iteration of the Internet comprised of persistent, shared, 3D virtual locales linked into a perceived virtual cosmos. Some people also refer to virtual environments in which users can move around and interact with other players as the metaverse.
The metaverse, according to Zuckerberg, is “the next generation of the internet.” Horizon Workrooms, the company’s first metaverse offering, debuted in August 2021. It enables Users to build avatars that can access their work laptop and engage with coworkers in a virtual “metaverse” using Facebook’s virtual reality headset, the Oculus Quest 2. The technology also allows for real-world interactions with coworkers, something Facebook claims cannot be reproduced with current remote work technology. The rumoured new name is said to be a highly guarded secret, with even senior executives being kept in the dark.
Facebook currently employs over 10,000 people who are working on consumer devices such as augmented reality glasses, which Zuckerberg believes will become as common as smartphones. He told the press in July 2021 that “we will effectively move from people viewing us as primarily a social media company to being a metaverse company” over the next several years.
Facebook’s proposed name change comes as the company faces new scrutiny over several incidents involving its social media platforms, including a series of papers released to Congress, the Securities and Exchange Commission, and media outlets by a whistleblower.
Facebook isn’t the only well-known technology business to alter its name as its goals grow. Google reorganized altogether under the Alphabet holding company in 2015, partly to show that it was no longer just a search engine, but a global conglomerate with subsidiaries developing self-driving cars and health-care technology. In 2016, Snapchat changed its name to Snap Incorporation, the same year it began referring to itself as a “camera company” and unveiled its first set of Spectacles camera spectacles.
Apart from Zuckerberg’s remarks about a metaverse, Facebook has been quietly building the framework for a bigger focus on future technology. It established a specialized metaverse team this past summer. Andrew Bosworth, the company’s head of AR and VR, has recently been promoted to chief technology officer. Only a few days ago, Facebook announced plans to hire 10,000 more people in Europe to work on the metaverse.
The idea of a Facebook-led metaverse has been met with considerable scepticism. In reaction to a post criticizing Zuckerberg’s goals, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, on Tuesday Claimed the idea was dystopian. It has also sparked speculations regarding the company’s new name on the internet. Some have offered names like FB or Horizon, while others appear to be supporting Meta as a candidate.
Recall that in July of 2021, Zuckerberg told The Verge, a famous tech blog, that people shouldn’t live through “tiny, luminous rectangles.” That’s not how people are made to engage, he remarked, referring to people’s dependence on cell phones. In many of today’s meetings, you’re looking at a grid of faces on a screen. That’s not how we look at things. He mentioned being able to virtually enter a 3D concert after first watching it on a mobile phone screen as an example of a metaverse application.
“In the future, instead of just doing this over the phone, you’ll be able to sit as a hologram on my sofa, or I’ll be able to sit as a hologram on your couch, and it’ll appear as if we’re in the same room, even if we’re in different states or hundreds of miles apart,” he said. That appears to be quite effective.
Facebook has made a significant investment in virtual reality, spending $2 billion (£1.46 billion) to acquire Oculus, the company that produces its VR products.
According to Verity McIntosh, A VR expert at the University of the West of England, said that “part of the reason Facebook is so heavily invested in VR/AR is that the granularity of data available when users interact on these platforms is an order of magnitude higher than on screen-based media.”
She said that the presence of tech giants like Facebook defining and colonizing the space, while traditional governing systems struggle to keep up with technological progress, could exacerbate the problem.
Enjoyed this post? Never miss out on any of our future posts by »