The social media giant announced the name change on Thursday during its annual Connect conference. Mark Zuckerberg, CEO at Meta laid out the vision on building the future of the company across AR & VR technologies.
The name, ‘Meta’ derived from the sci-fi term ‘Metaverse,’ signifying its play in the virtual world is a reflection on the company’s focus to moving forward. Metaverse will be a social 3D virtual space where users can share immersive experiences with others, even things that cannot be done in the physical world.
“We chose ‘Meta’ because it can mean ‘beyond,’ and captures our commitment to building social technologies that take us beyond what digital connection makes possible today,” said Zuckerberg. The rebranding was introduced with a brand-new logo and color, which users will be able to experience in 3D in Metaverse, where you can move through it and around it.
While demonstrating the company’s ambitions for Metaverse, Zuckerberg stressed on how a lot of this is way-off, and that many elements of the Metaverse will only come into the mainstream in 5-10 years. He also claimed that the company expects to add billions of dollars for years to come before the metaverse reaches the scale.
The corporate structure of the company will continue to operate the same way, however, the reporting on the financials will change. “Starting with our results for the fourth quarter of 2021, we plan to report on two operating segments: Family of Apps and Reality Labs,” explained Zuckerberg. Metaverse will also change its stock ticker from FB to MVRS, effective December 1st.
Along with the vision behind the company’s rebrand, Zuckerberg also introduced foundational elements across the Meta’s AR & VR technologies. Take a look at some them:
Meta announced its early vision for a home base. For all those users who turn on their VR headset now and see their home base, Horizon Home – launching soon as an update will provide a social experience where you can hang out, watch videos and jump into games and applications together.
Messenger Calls in VR
Earlier this year, messenger support in VR was launched, enabling users to send messages to friends from inside the VR headset. The Metaverse update will let users jump into audio calls with friends while traveling to VR destinations together.
Exciting new updates to existing games will be added in the coming months. Several new games and updates, including a five-title partnership with Vertigo Games has also been announced.
A fresh launch of accessories and the Active Pack for the VR is expected in the coming year. Many updates such as the boxing mode for supernatural, a new fitness studio, and hand-tracked bodyweight exercises will also be introduced before the end of this year.
Additionally, Meta also gave a sneak-peek into the next generation VR hardware, Project Cambria. Launching next year, this high-end device will be available at a higher price than the Quest 2 headset. This was followed by a brief introduction to the first fully AR-capable smart glasses, Project Nazare. Which according to Zuckerberg are still a ‘few years out.’
Zuckerberg also announced an update to the studio tool, Spark AR which helps users create AR effects for mobile. An application code-named, Polar will help AR creation accessible to novice creators with no prior experience in art, design, or programming.
“A lot of pieces need to be built before we get to the metaverse proper. At Connect today, we reviewed some of that work.” said Zuckerberg. "I'm proud of what we've built so far, and I'm excited about what comes next -- as we move beyond what's possible today, beyond the constraints of screens, beyond the limits of distance and physics, and towards a future where everyone can be present with each other, create new opportunities and experience new things. It is a future that is beyond any one company and that will be made by all of us."
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