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Apple doesn’t want anything to do with Facebook’s metaverse. Why this is very bad news for Mark Zuckerberg

Even though the Metaverse won’t have a tangible effect on anyone’s life for about half a decade (if ever), it looks like every tech company is worried about missing Mark’s fantastic VR world. Zuckerberg. You might remember her video talk about how great it will be when we all strap an Oculus Quest 2 to our faces and live our lives in a digital reality rather than the real world.

As for tech companies, no one wants to be left behind. Or, at the very least, no one wants to miss a chance to capitalize on the hottest buzzword of the moment.

I was at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) last week, and the only thing hard to miss, other than the number of companies who refused to attend in person, was how good the companies who showed up wanted to talk about the metaverse. the the metaverse was everywhere, which I guess is appropriate for what is meant to be a more immersive version of the Internet.

There is one notable exception, however. Apple, according to Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, has no interest in being part of an immersive virtual world where people spend all of their time doing everything from work, going to school, watching a movie with friends or playing games virtually.

Gurman says Facebook’s vision is “off limits” at Apple. In fact, Apple’s vision is for reverse augmented reality glasses that don’t “take anyone out of their real world.”

This is important because it has been widely reported that Apple is working on a headset. Analysts, including Gurman, have suggested that a first model could be shipped this year.

Despite the fact that Apple is technically catching up with the handful of companies already making headphones, there’s really no doubt that whatever it introduces will be a major player. This is a problem for Zuckerberg and his dream because Apple is going to be a major player in augmented reality glasses.

That doesn’t mean their product is guaranteed to be successful, but it’s one of the few companies that has the expertise, technical skills, and resources to create something that consumers might actually want to use. And Apple, unsurprisingly, doesn’t want anything to do with Facebook’s metaverse.

The two companies fought for years for user privacy, with the issue coming to a head with Apple’s release of iOS 14.5, which required developers to seek permission before tracking users. Facebook’s business, which relies on its ability to track users and then show them personalized ads based on the information it collects, has taken a measurable blow.

The only reason Zuckerberg is so invested in making the Metaverse is because he’s so frustrated with having to follow Apple’s rules. Apple controls the world’s most important platform, the iPhone. Of course, there are other smartphones out there, most of them running Google’s Android software, but it’s the iPhone that gets the most attention.

This means that Zuckerberg is at the mercy of Apple (and Google) and their rules about what Facebook can do and what information it is able to collect. By building the Metaverse, Facebook and Zuckerberg hope to have their own platform, one that is not constrained by outside forces.

It’s also worth mentioning that Facebook’s pivot to the Metaverse – it even changed its name to Meta – was primarily meant to distract people from the onslaught of controversy and criticism it faced in the middle. of a series of scathing revelations from whistleblower Frances Haugen. On some level, it seems to have worked. Everyone wants a piece of the Metaverse, or Web 3.0, or as you want to call the vision of an Internet where we spend all of our time in Zoom meetings on steroids.

But, in Apple’s version, AR glasses are something you could wear for specific purposes. You can wear them when driving to get directions or while working. You won’t be wearing them all day, and you won’t be using them to do whatever you’re currently doing on your phone. If Apple manages to release its version, that’s very bad news for Facebook. Then again, this could be the best news for the rest of us.

The opinions expressed here by the columnists of Inc.com are theirs and not those of Inc.com.

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