Meta aspires to be a pioneer in a space where there are no laws and where hundreds of billions of dollars can be made in the coming years.
For many people, Facebook Connect has never been a marked in red on the clendar. The event’s attention has always been lower than that sparked by huge presentations by companies like Apple, Google, or PlayStation, which concentrated on technologies that are still far from democratization, such as Virtual Reality or Augmented Reality. At least, it was until this summer, when Mark Zuckerberg used the term “metaverse” in an interview with “The Verge.” Not because it wasn’t known that several corporations had been working on plans for a virtual underworld in which users may work and interact physically, as in a science fiction film.
Simply put, something clicks when the CEO of one of the internet’s most important pieces says he wants his company to be more “metaverse” than a collection of social networks, and you see new tools emerge, such as Horizon Workrooms, or learn that the company’s annual profit will be cut by $ 10 billion as a result of the effort. The machine then appears to be operational. You start to comprehend that this shift can happen in the medium term, albeit in a restricted way. Perhaps not in the 5 to 10 year time frame that is being explored, but we’ll see. What is evident is that Facebook is willing to take significant risks in order to do this. Even part of his identity was given up, beginning with the name of the matrix, which is now Meta.
There are countless reasons for this. Between glimpses of virtual homes and chess games between holograms, Zuckerberg dropped a good bunch during his presentation on October 28. A lot of the statements were also very personal. Focused on the executive’s desire to leave a legacy. A legacy that transcends social media. “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,” said Zuckerberg during the event, initialling it at Meta’s founding letter.
The first-mover advantage
Other corporations, such as Epic Games or Tencent, are betting on the metaverse’s growth as well. The first announced a $1 billion round of funding in April to concentrate on its development. A significant economic effort in which the creator of ‘Fortnite’ collaborates with companies such as Sony, but far behind what Facebook (or Meta) is ready to offer. His wager – tens of billions of dollars and 10,000 employees in the European Union alone – will allow the company to come earlier, create more jobs, and establish the groundwork for the operation of the digital B-Side, where anything is conceivable. Meta aims to be the metaverse if Facebook was the social network.
Main advantage: It’s a lot easier when there aren’t any rules.
For years, Facebook has been confusing. The Cambridge Analytica scandal has been in the crosshairs of regulators and governments since it was made public. The company’s mistakes, or alleged malpractices, go beyond the renowned internal documents recently disclosed by former employee Frances Haugen. They go a long way. Since 2018, the corporation has lived in the midst of a scandal.
The demand for social media control has been spurred by concerns about privacy and content moderation. Margrethe Vestager, the European Union’s Commissioner for Competition, recently acknowledged that, in the case of Facebook, this would be a multi-year court battle. What would it cost to regulate the metaverse, then?
According to experts, legislation lags behind technology, which might allow Facebook to gain a significant amount of ground. It would allow them to gain territory in one space while losing ground in another, such as the metaverse.
Legislators continue to be confused about the responsibilities of technology, the internet, and personal data.
The business of the future
Meta has stated unequivocally that the metaverse will be the digital business of the future. A place where users will pay for the experiences it provides, such as dressing their avatar, designing their virtual home, or playing video games.
“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 during Facebook Connect.
It can also provide advertisers with the opportunity to continue developing at a rapid pace for decades to come. More if the slowdown in advertising sales, visible in the last quarter of 2021, becomes persistent. According to Meta, there is little possibility of overcoming the obstacles erected by firms like Apple, which has made tools available to its users to limit the amount of data that its programmes can collect.
“We and our advertisers will continue to feel the impact of these changes in future quarters,” Facebook’s chief operating officer, Sheryl Sandberg, told investors earlier this week.
Nonetheless, the number of Zuckerberg’s social media followers continues to rise gradually. During the third quarter of the year, the total number of monthly active users increased by 12 percent, reaching 3,580 million across all platforms. Numbers that are appealing to advertising. Despite the fact that advertising is less targeted at specific users than in the past.
Unquestionably, the recent Facebook scandals have harmed the company’s image. It’s simply required to look at how their acts are valued. The cumulative fall in the last month has been 5%. Meta is raising its price by around 2% this Friday, October 29, after a lukewarm response.
Experts, on the other hand, are unsure that the name change, metaverse approach, and choice to relegate social networks to the background – even in the face of the gallery – will be enough to improve the company’s reputation.
Image Credit: Getty
You were reading: What’s behind Zuckerberg and Facebook’s bet on the metaverse?