Unless you have very impressive boundaries set for your social media and news intake, you’ve likely seen the announcement Facebook made unveiling their new name — Meta.
Below is the official statement from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
“Today, we’re seen as a social media company. But in our DNA, we’re a company that builds technology to connect people, and the metaverse is the next frontier, just like social networking was when we got started,” Zuckerberg said at Thursday’s Connect 2021 event. “From now on, we’re going to be metaverse first, not Facebook first. That means that over time, you won’t need to use Facebook to use our other services as our new brand starts showing up in our products. I hope that people come to know the Meta brand and the future that we stand for.”
So what does it all mean, Zuck?
The Facebook app will keep its name. Zuckerberg emphasized the company’s structure and how it uses/shares data will not change. What will change, he says, is that the metaverse will enable people to get together with their friends and family, work, learn, play, shop and create. Through this, Meta hopes to target the younger demographic that Facebook and Instagram have lost in recent years to apps like TikTok.
- Horizon Home — Users can create their own digital living spaces where they can hang out with friends, watch videos and jump into games and apps together.
- Messenger Calls in VR — Jump into an audio call with friends from any Messenger-enabled platform and eventually hang out or travel to VR destinations together.
- Gaming — A number of new games and updates.
- Fitness — Plans to launch the Active Pack for Quest 2. This includes new grips for the Touch controllers and an exercise-optimized facial interface that will help users stay in control while they sweat.
- The Future of Work — Testing will begin soon for Quest for Business, a suite of features designed for businesses.
- Presence Platform — A suite of machine perception and AI capabilities that will let developers build more realistic mixed reality, interaction and voice experiences.
- Project Cambria — Their next-generation all-in-one VR hardware, launching next year.
- Spark AR Updates — Working on new tools that creators can use to place digital objects in the physical world and let people interact with them, realistically, with depth and occlusion.
- Educational Investment — A $150 million initiative to train the next generation of creators building immersive educational content.
“Our hope is that within the next decade, the metaverse will reach a billion people, host hundreds of billions of dollars of digital commerce, and support jobs for millions of creators and developers,” Zuckerberg said.
Facebook told investors its spending on virtual reality and other next-generation products and services will take a $10 billion bite out of its overall operating profit this year. It also announced plans to hire 10,000 workers in Europe over the next five years to build the metaverse.
So while this news may spark more questions than interest at this point, we are eager to watch how metaverse develops in the coming months and years, and what it actually means for us digital marketers.
Here at EPIC, we will continue to monitor, adjust and report back as there is more to share — there will likely be much, much more!