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Facebook Will Soon Be Known as a Metaverse—Details on the Rebranding

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Oct. 20 2021, Published 12:04 p.m. ET

Facebook is reportedly changing its name, although it’s a well-kept secret that only insiders know. The name change announcement comes months after Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg expressed his desire to transition from people seeing Facebook as “being a social media company to being a metaverse company.”

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What's the metaverse and what changes can we expect from Facebook as the company embarks on its journey to reinvent itself?

What is the metaverse?

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According to Zuckerberg, the metaverse is “an embodied internet.” Essentially, it’s the internet reimagined. Instead of being able to view 2D content from your phone, tablet, or computer, the metaverse is “a persistent, synchronous environment where we can be together.”

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Although Facebook is behind Oculus, a VR (virtual reality) device that allows you to immerse yourself in a place like a game or even a concert, Zuckerberg explained during an interview hosted by The Vergecast that the metaverse is much more than that.

Instead of providing you with a 3D view, the metaverse allows you to be present, sometimes with other people. Zuckerberg said that the metaverse will “resemble some kind of hybrid between the social platforms we see today and the environment that you are embodied in.”

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Is the metaverse comparable to a virtual world?

Although the metaverse sounds similar to the experience you might have while looking through an Oculus Rift headset, Zuckerberg shared that it goes well beyond gaming. Imagine having a meeting with coworkers where instead of viewing faces over a Zoom call on your computer, you would actually be able to look to your left and see someone sitting there.

Zuckerberg explained that the metaverse will allow people’s virtual experiences to be more comfortable and natural, almost as if you're teleporting to a different place. The CEO said that the purpose of becoming a metaverse company isn't “to be engaged with the internet more” but instead to "engage with the internet more naturally."

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Rather than viewing a concert in 2D or even 3D, the metaverse will ultimately allow you to feel as though you're actually standing in a crowd (as a hologram) with fellow fans watching your favorite band or musician perform in front of you.

Will Facebook's rebranding supply more jobs?

Source: Twitter (@alexheath)

The Verge recently reported that Facebook “has been steadily laying the groundwork for a greater focus on the next generation of technology.” The source shared that Facebook started setting up its metaverse team this past summer. The tech company also announced that it was “promoting Andrew Bosworth, head of AR and VR, to chief technology officer.”

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Facebook plans to hire “10,000 more employees to work on the metaverse in Europe,” a project that's expected to take years to complete. Zuckerberg is expected to announce Facebook’s new name on Oct. 28, although the news could come sooner.

Is rebranding a way for Facebook to regain public trust?

After Frances Haugen came forward with allegations of how Facebook puts “profits before people,” the company could benefit from a rebranding although we don't know if that's the purpose. According to Zuckerberg, augmented and VR is something he was interested in before Facebook even launched.

In fact, during an interview hosted by The Vergecast, Zuckerberg admitted that he started thinking about the idea of augmented and VR during his middle school years.

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