On Thursday at its Connect 2021 virtual conference, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced a change in name of the parent company to Meta, a change that brings all of its app and technologies under a new brand name.
In a blog post, the company said Meta’s focus “will be to bring the metaverse to life and help people connect, find communities and grow businesses.” The change comes as Facebook faces public scrutiny after thousands of leaked documents showed employees’ disillusionment over the platform’s policies. All the company’s product retains their name, such as Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp and Messenger.
“The metaverse will feel like a hybrid of today’s online social experiences, sometimes expanded into three dimensions or projected into the physical world,” Zuckerberg explained in the blog post. “It will let you share immersive experiences with other people even when you can’t be together — and do things together you couldn’t do in the physical world. It’s the next evolution in a long line of social technologies, and it’s ushering in a new chapter for our company.” In a design blog, the company explained how it came up with the new Meta brand name and logo.
Facebook’s rebranding to Meta is similar to Google’s decision to restructure under the Alphabet parent company name in 2015. Under the new structure, Google separated its search engine and advertising business from one another and other projects. In the middle of October, Zuckerberg to The Verge Facebook was planning to rebrand. “Over the next five years or so, in this next chapter of our company, I think we will effectively transition from people seeing us as primarily being a social media company to being a metaverse company,” Zuckerberg said.
Chief business officer, Marne Levine lined the metaverse to being anywhere and being able to experience events that has happened thousands of years ago. “Imagine standing on the streets, hearing the sounds, visiting the markets, to get a sense of the rhythm of life over 2,000 years ago,” she said.
Facebook’s virtual reality business will play a major role in the metaverse. The company bought its Oculus VR for $2 billion in 2014. The company intends to attract more users by selling the product at a loss or at a reduced cost. In a Facebook post, incoming CTO Andrew Bosworth announced the company will be retiring the Oculus brand name. The Oculus app will now be called the Meta app and the Oculus Quest will now be the Meta Quest.
“We all have a strong attachment to the Oculus brand, and this was a very difficult decision to make. While we’re changing the brand of the hardware, Oculus will continue to be a core part of our DNA and will live on in things like software and developer tools,” Bosworth wrote.