Mark Zuckerberg and the Metaverse Future of Facebook

Mark Zuckerberg and the Metaverse Future of Facebook

According to Zuckerberg, the metaverse is an embodied internet that goes beyond Virtual Reality (VR). It will be the successor to the mobile internet. Instead of just viewing content, in the metaverse you will be in the content.

Imagine yourself working from home and you need to be in a meeting that is hundreds of miles away. You put on your eyeglasses, and you teleport to the meeting room in what seems like a virtual world. You have a staff member to the right of you and one to the left of you.

Each person in the meeting has a desktop that everyone else can access. There is a whiteboard that each of you can draw on. You virtually share files with each other seamlessly.

Now imagine the meeting is over and you need to meet a friend at a clothing store 50 miles away. You teleport to that store within seconds. Now you and your friend are shopping for clothes together, touching them, trying them on, and buying them.

Welcome to the Metaverse.

Mark Zuckerberg and the Metaverse Future of Facebook

What Is the Metaverse?

On July 22, 2021, Facebook’s CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, was interviewed by Casey Newton of The Verge. In that interview, Zuckerberg revealed the future direction of Facebook. He hopes Facebook will transition from being a social media company to a metaverse company.

According to Zuckerberg, the metaverse is an embodied internet that goes beyond Virtual Reality (VR). It will be the successor to the mobile internet. Instead of just viewing content, in the metaverse, you will be in the content.

In the metaverse, you can dance with friends, go to a 3D concert or a comedy show, and share some sense of space together with others. You will experience a synchronous environment that will have elements that are 2D and 3D.

The metaverse will be accessible across all computing platforms, including VR, Augmented Reality (AR), personal computers (PC), mobile devices, and game consoles. Zuckerberg and his team have spent many hours working hard on the next chapter of Facebook, which he hopes to achieve within the next 5 years.

Zuckerberg stated, “What virtual and augmented reality can do, and what the metaverse broadly is going to help people experience, is a sense of presence that I think is just much more natural in the way that we’re made to interact.”

“And I think it will be more comfortable. The interactions that we have will be a lot richer, they’ll feel real. In the future, instead of just doing this over a phone call, you’ll be able to sit as a hologram on my couch, or I’ll be able to sit as a hologram on your couch, and it’ll actually feel like we’re in the same place, even if we’re in different states or hundreds of miles apart,” Zuckerberg continued.

VR Headsets

According to Zuckerberg, today’s VR headsets are a bit heavy, big, and clunky. When Newton mentioned that he didn’t think people would be comfortable sitting in a VR helmet all day, Zuckerberg admitted the need for technological advancements and he and his team are working on them.

With the release of Quest 2, a VR Headset created by the Facebook brand Oculus, Zuckerberg was surprised to find that the product has been a hit in the way people are using it. Primarily made to be used for gaming, Quest 2 has shown that people are using it also to hang out socially with others.

People are also using Quest 2 as a workout device, with apps like Supernatural or FitXR, where they are taking fitness classes, engaging in boxing, or dancing. Zuckerberg said it’s fun and a lot of people are enjoying it.

Zuckerberg realizes the biggest challenge is to basically take what we would have thought was a supercomputer 10 years ago and cram all the components, such as networking chips, computer chips, holographic wave guides, batteries, speakers, and more, into a pair of normal eyeglasses that are about 5 millimeters thick, to incorporate AR and replace the VR helmets.

The Infinite Office

In the areas of focus time and individual productivity, Zuckerberg and his team have already created an “infinite office” for their VR headsets in which it is great for multitasking and setting up your work environment everywhere.

As a coder, you’ll have multiple windows open rather than single tasking. Meetings conducted in VR already exist for Zuckerberg and he feels that the avatars aren’t as realistic today as they will be in a few years and it’s already better than a Zoom call.

In VR meetings there is spatial audio in which the sound coming from the person to your left actually sounds like it’s coming from your left side. In VR meetings, people can share as many documents as they want, not just one document at a time through one screen.

Whole Economies in the Metaverse

Zuckerberg believes the metaverse will bring enormous opportunities to individual creators and artists. He feels new job types will be created in the metaverse. A massive part of the creator economy will be individual creators creating places and experiences within the metaverse.

Entertainers and artists will create new ways to express and entertain in the metaverse. Zuckerberg believes there will be a whole economy wrapped around digital objects and outfits that you bring with you as you instantaneously teleport across experiences with your avatar.

Zuckerberg mentioned he used to think of Facebook as a job where they build products that people love to use. But now, he thinks it’s more important to create opportunities that will be positive for society in terms of economic opportunity that everyone can participate in that’s inclusive. Zuckerberg said, “It needs to be an ecosystem”.

Zuckerberg hopes millions of people will work in and create content for experiences, spaces, virtual goods, virtual clothing, and safety. The metaverse will not just be a product, but a huge economy that Zuckerberg says needs to exist.

The metaverse will be a place that people can hang out in, work in, enjoy a concert, enjoy new forms of work and new forms of entertainment, workout, create, buy, and make money. Zuckerberg is looking forward to playing a huge part in building the next chapter of the internet.