If there’s one social media platform almost everybody you know has, it’s probably Facebook. Established by legendary tech dude Mark Zuckerberg in 2004, this social networking site has stood the test of time.
Well, it looks like Zuckerberg is taking his creation to the next level. The social media behemoth announced plans to hire 10,000 people in the European Union to build the “metaverse”, a virtual reality version of the internet that the tech giant sees as the future.
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“The metaverse has the potential to help unlock access to new creative, social, and economic opportunities. And Europeans will be shaping it right from the start,” Facebook said in a blog post. “Today, we are announcing a plan to create 10,000 new high-skilled jobs within the European Union (EU) over the next five years.”
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Ok, cool, but what is the ‘metaverse?’ Facebook explained it like this: “The “metaverse” is a set of virtual spaces where you can create and explore with other people who aren’t in the same physical space as you. You’ll be able to hang out with friends, work, play, learn, shop, create, and more. It’s not necessarily about spending more time online – it’s about making the time you do spend online more meaningful.”
The technology might, for example, allow someone to don virtual reality glasses that make it feel as if they’re face-to-face with a friend — when in fact they are thousands of miles apart and connected via the internet.
The European hires will include “highly specialized engineers,” but the company otherwise didn’t disclose its plans for the new metaverse team. “The EU has a number of advantages that make it a great place for tech companies to invest — a large consumer market, first-class universities, and, crucially, top-quality talent,” the blog post said.
You shouldn’t expect the metaverse anytime soon though. Facebook admitted that many of its products will only be fully realized in the next 10-15 years. By then, we’ll probably understand what the metaverse means.
Art Daniella Sison