The Metaverse will be built with safety and responsibility in mind.
Facebook has made the bold decision to rebrand itself as Meta as it shifts its focus to virtual reality.
Derived from the term metaverse, which refers to an expansive and immersive 3D vision of the Internet, Meta announced on Oct 28 that only its company name will be changed while the social media platform will continue to keep the name Facebook.
At the company’s live-streamed virtual and augmented reality conference, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said that the change comes with the intention to broaden the company’s idea of connecting people anytime and anywhere.
He said: “The next platform in medium will be even more immersive and embody the Internet where you’re in the experience, not just looking at it and we call this the Metaverse.
“We believe the Metaverse will be the successor to the mobile Internet.”
To give viewers an idea of how Meta plans on moving forward, Zuckerberg showcased a series of video demonstrations of how the metaverse will look like. One such example is the rendering of people and spaces to make the virtual universe feel real.
With Meta’s goal to make realistic and stylised avatars, you’ll soon be able to undergo something similar to a virtual cosmetic surgery. Through hair and skin rendering and relighting for 3D avatars, you’ll be able to envision yourself in various hairstyles, different spectacle frames and even with tattoos.
Upon zooming in, you can even see your avatar’s pores, much like a real person.
To complete the full package, Meta went on to show viewers an example of a realistic virtual space that avatars will be able to interact with.
In the short clip, one of the staff researchers can be seen moving around the mock apartment and on the left, there’s a rendered version of the space where the objects are being moved in real time. This notable difference is what sets this technology apart from CGI.
Meta hopes that through this shift in development, it will be able to create a deep feeling that we’re present with people beyond physical limitations.
Zuckerberg concluded the livestream by acknowledging that while building social media applications will always be an important focus for Meta, currently their brand is so tightly linked to one product that it can’t possibly represent everything that they’re doing today, let alone in the future.
“We are still the company that designs technology around people but now we have a new North star — to help bring the metaverse to life and we have a new name that reflects the full breadth of what we do and the future that we want to help build,” he said.
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