While Facebook’s daily user count may have plateaued, its parent company, Meta, is already moving ahead to the next stage, focusing on the theoretical’ metaverse’ and how we’ll all be engaging in totally digital worlds in the not-too-distant future.
This is the subject of Meta’s most recent ad campaign, which debuted this week.
As you can see, Meta is attempting to push their Quest 2 VR headsets amid the Super Bowl hype train, with the story of an out-of-work dog mascot who rediscovers old acquaintances in Meta’s version of the metaverse – which, at least in this example, will exist within VR.
As Meta is quick to point out, this isn’t the entire metaverse story. Indeed, Meta has stated repeatedly that the metaverse will include AR, VR, machine learning, AI, advanced wearable gadgets, and more, as per its vision.
According to Meta’s increasing public relations campaign, any emerging technology of any kind will tie back into the metaverse. This is intriguing because, by changing its name to ‘Meta,’ and using that umbrella term to include all types of tangentially related innovation, Meta is gradually gaining a greater association with the phrase, which doesn’t really imply anything in a broader sense.
A’metaverse,’ after all, can refer to a variety of things, but it’s currently being referred to as this new, all-encompassing digital connection area. However, AR and AI functions will work independently of any metaverse, so it’ll be interesting to observe how Meta is reshaping the larger narrative, which will eventually put it in the driver’s seat in driving the next generation of tech advancement.
That, of course, includes its virtual reality headsets. While sales of the Quest 2 are increasing (Meta’s Reality Labs division brought in $877 million in revenue last quarter, $160 million more than its previous best quarterly mark), we still have a long way to go before we’re all hanging out with friends in this immersive world full of limitless possibilities like this dog.
But it appears that’s the direction we’re going. It’s just not clear how we’ll get there from all the numerous broken elements that Meta is trying to piece together.
In reality, Meta’s vision of the metaverse, as depicted in different video clips and presentations, is just its virtual reality environment, which it hopes to grow into a social alternative via Horizon Worlds and other platforms.
This is impressive (if you like The Lego Movie and don’t mind floating around like Aladdin’s genie), but it’s still a long way from becoming a completely interactive, immersive environment.
It also doesn’t have to be linked to AR tools or other purposes; it’s simply VR, which Meta has been working on for years under a different moniker.
Of course, this will eventually open up additional possibilities, such as trading digital products and buying in virtual reality environments. All of these aspects will come together to create a larger metaverse experience. But, as someone who has spent a day in virtual reality, I can tell you that it’s not the most appealing prospect right now, and it’ll take some time and tweaking to enable more intuitive controls that don’t leave you feeling uneasy and stunted in the environment.
But there’s a lot of promise there, as well as a lot of value in the next shift. It’s just fascinating to see how Meta is attempting to monopolize a wide range of broader tech discussions and advancements by grouping them all under the banner of the metaverse,’ while also saying innocently that ‘no one business will rule the metaverse.’
Because it’s feasible that a single firm will run this version of the metaverse and set the rules for everyone else who wants to participate. Meta, formerly Facebook, is the company that is progressively defining the next stage of digital connection.
Source: Andrew Hutchinson