Facebook plans to change company name to focus on metaverse – .

Facebook plans to change company name to focus on metaverse – .

Facebook plans to change the name of its business next week to reflect its focus on building the metaverse, according to a source with direct knowledge of the matter.

The upcoming name change, which CEO Mark Zuckerberg plans to talk about at the company’s annual Connect conference on October 28 but could be unveiled earlier, aims to signal the tech giant’s ambition to be known for more than social media and all the evils that come with it. . The rebranding would likely position the blue Facebook app as one of many products from a parent company overseeing groups like Instagram, WhatsApp, Oculus, etc. A Facebook spokesperson declined to comment for this story.

Facebook already has more than 10,000 employees making consumer hardware like AR glasses that Zuckerberg says will ultimately be as ubiquitous as smartphones. In July he said The edge that over the next few years, “we will effectively move from people who see us primarily as a social media company to a metaverse company.”

A rebranding could also serve to further separate the futuristic work Zuckerberg is focusing on from the scrutiny Facebook is currently undergoing for how its social platform works today. Former employee-turned-whistleblower Frances Haugen recently disclosed a mine of damning internal documents to The Wall Street Journal and testified about them before Congress. Antitrust regulators in the United States and elsewhere are trying to break the business, and public confidence in the way Facebook does business is on the decline.

Facebook isn’t the first well-known tech company to change its name as its ambitions grow. In 2015, Google completely reorganized under a holding company called Alphabet, in part to signal that it was no longer just a search engine, but a sprawling conglomerate with companies making driverless cars and technology. health. And Snapchat was renamed Snap Inc. in 2016, the same year it started calling itself a “camera company” and launched its first pair of Spectacles eyeglasses.

I’ve been told that the new Facebook company name is a well-kept secret within its walls and not widely known, even among all of its senior management. One possible name might have something to do with Horizon, the name of the still-unreleased VR version of Facebook-meets-Roblox that the company has been developing for a few years. The name of this app was recently changed to Horizon Worlds shortly after Facebook introduced a version for workplace collaboration called Horizon Workrooms.

Zuckerberg’s comments aside, Facebook has steadily laid the groundwork for a greater focus on the next generation of technology. Last summer, he set up a dedicated metaverse team. Most recently, he announced that AR and VR chief Andrew Bosworth would be promoted to chief technology officer. And just days ago, Facebook announced plans to hire 10,000 more employees to work on the metaverse in Europe.

The metaverse “is going to be a big priority, and I think that’s going to be a big part of the next chapter on how the internet is evolving after mobile internet,” Zuckerberg said. The edge’s Casey Newton this summer. “And I think that will be the next big chapter for our business as well, really doubling down in this area. “

To complicate matters, while Facebook has been heavily promoting the idea of ​​the metaverse in recent weeks, it’s still not a widely understood concept. The term was originally coined by science fiction novelist Neal Stephenson to describe a virtual world that people escape from a dystopian real world. Now he’s adopted by one of the biggest and most controversial companies in the world – and he’ll have to explain why his own virtual world is worth diving into.


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