If you haven’t been living under a rock, you’ll know that everyone has been talking about “Meta” lately. Of course, if you are not in the tech industry, you’ll be forgiven for thinking that Meta is a Marvel Cinematic Universe term or that it perhaps has something to do with philosophy or psychology.
However, that is far from the case. Rather, Meta has been the tech industry’s latest buzzword simply because one of the biggest social media platforms, Facebook, will be rebranding and changing its parent company’s name to Meta Platforms Inc., or Meta for short, in an attempt to blur the lines between the physical and digital world.
Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief executive officer, announced this on October 28 at Facebook’s annual Connect conference which brings together augmented and virtual reality developers, content creators and marketers to celebrate the industry’s growth.
At the conference, Zuckerberg elaborated on what the metaverse would mean for users and how it would contribute to building the future of the tech space while also bringing together social connections, entertainment, gaming, fitness, work, education and commerce.
“We’ve learnt a lot from struggling with social issues and living under closed platforms, and now it is time to take everything that we’ve learnt and help build the next chapter,” Zuckerberg said.
He also added that Facebook, Instagram and Whatsapp will be keeping their names under the rebranding.
If you still have no idea what all this means for you as a consumer, keep reading because we are going to break it down for you.
What is a metaverse?
No, a metaverse is not where the Avengers blipped to in the Avengers: Endgame movie. Rather, Zuckerberg explained that it will be a social, three-dimensional virtual space where users can share immersive experiences with other people. It will also allow users to do things they can’t in the physical world.
When we first heard this, we certainly thought it was a high-end version of The Sims. But that isn’t exactly the case. Rather, it is a world with absolutely endless possibilities.
Using virtual reality headsets, augmented reality glasses, smartphone apps and other devices, users can engage with virtual communities and work, play and meet each other in the virtual realm.
The metaverse will also bring online shopping and social media aspects into the realm. It will essentially be a hybrid of today’s online social experiences that will allow people to be together even when they cannot physically.
Considering today’s climate with the pandemic and current restrictions and border closures, this is certainly a timely move by Facebook.