Meta, the owners of Facebook, is concluding plans to open its first retail stores ahead of its plans to develop products for the metaverse. The company plans to showcase devices like virtual reality headsets and teleconferencing gadgets that allow people to video chat through Facebook.
The retail plans, though is still inconclusive and could be scrapped, indicate Meta is in need of a real-world presence to showcase what it can do in the virtual world, according to the New York Times.
The retail opening, which is coming after about a week after Meta announced it is changing its name from Facebook would mean there would be more focus on building a virtual world or metaverse where users can socialize, work and play.
What you should know
- The company sells several products that it could let customers try in person, some of which have been sold in retail locations like Best Buy.
- The Oculus Quest virtual reality headsets, for instance, will be rebranded to become Meta Quest, to give people a chance to see its vision for a metaverse before they decide to buy. Also, the Facebook Portal video chat devices will be rebranded Meta Portal.
- Meta is reportedly planning a flagship store for Burlingame, California, where it has an office for Reality Labs. But before the name change, the company reportedly settled on calling its retail locations the “Facebook Store.”
- The social network’s recent rebrand to Meta and its increased focus on consumer hardware are part of its effort to build the metaverse.
- The metaverse is envisioned as a future version of the internet where VR and AR play a much bigger role than today.
- Companies like Apple have long found success in retail stores, although Microsoft recently ditched its retail locations to focus on its online store.
In case you missed it
CEO, Mark Zuckerberg recently announced a name change to Meta, so as to focus on building a new phase of interconnected virtual experiences using technologies like virtual and augmented reality.
The re-branding follows a series of negative news reports about Facebook, based on documents leaked by an ex-employee and whistleblower, Frances Haugen.