On May 4, Facebook owner Meta Platforms Inc (FB.O) provided an early look at its first physical store. The store includes a floor-to-ceiling screen demonstrating games on virtual reality headsets and spaces for testing video calling gadgets.
The store, which is planned to launch on May 9, is located inside Meta’s Reality Labs’. One of the leading sites in the Silicon Valley town of Burlingame, California. The department is working on the hardware goods that the corporation hopes to sell there. Items include Ray-Ban smart glasses, Portal video-calling devices, and Oculus VR headsets.
The Meta store brings to life what has been chiefly a potential future business. The world’s largest social media firm has spent billions in virtual and augmented reality to establish the “metaverse.”
While expenditures would be slightly lower than expected, executives noted that this operation would continue to be an area of expense growth. The company has invested more than $10 billion in creating the metaverse. Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg believes the metaverse might be the world’s next great computing platform. Although, he warns that the company’s bets may take a decade to pay off.
Zuckerburg added, “We are making large investments to deliver the next platform that I believe will be incredibly important, both for our mission and business comparable and value to the leading mobile platforms today. Now I recognize that it’s expensive to build this. It’s something that’s never been built before.”
Meta will launch its first actual store and showroom for VR headset technology on Monday, May 9. On the sore, consumers will be able to purchase the Quest 2 headset. Later this year, it is also preparing to introduce a higher-end headset, presently known as Project Cambria.
There have been fables about owning hardware, such as Google Glass, which has only found limited corporate and industrial uses, and 3-D televisions.
On the most recent earnings call, Zuckerberg stated that “the best experience will be on virtual and eventually, augmented reality platforms, especially on our platform like Quest.” Still, he also noted that the company plans to make it easier for people to enter the metaverse from more platforms. He added that people could enter the metaverse “even without needing a headset.”
Whoever wins the hardware fight, assuming the technology works for consumers, the issue of what people will do in the metaverse remains, and, frankly, what’s the point of it all? Skeptics perceive little more than hype and marketing.