Facebook to have a new name by next week
Facebook is planning to change its name next week in a move to rebrand the company as something much more than a social media application, The Verge reported Wednesday.
Reports suggest that Facebook is planning to rebrand itself as a company which focuses on metaverse. Facebook Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg defined metaverse as “a digital world where people can move between different devices and communicate in a virtual environment”.
Facebook has not commented on the reports.
The move will put Instagram, WhatsApp, Oculus, LiveRail, Threadsy and the Facebook app, under a parent company. Google adopted a similar structure in 2015 when it put all its products under a parent holding company, Alphabet.
According to reports, the company has heavily invested in Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) since July. The company is developing hardware such as Oculus VR headsets and working on AR glasses and wristband technologies.
On Monday, the company announced plans to hire 10,000 people in Europe to build the “metaverse”, a virtual reality version of the internet that the tech giant sees as the future.
“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.
According to The Verge, Mark Zuckerberg plans to talk about the name change at the company's annual Connect conference on Oct. 28, but it could be unveiled sooner.
The announcement of rebranding comes as Facebook grapples with the fallout of a damaging scandal, major outages of its services, and rising calls for regulation to curb its vast influence.
Earlier this month, a former employee turned whistleblower, Frances Haugen testified before US Congress after leaking a trove of internal documents to The Wall Street Journal.
The internal research documents showed that Instagram is making make body image issues worse for one in three teen girls.
The documents also outlined the harmful impact Instagram could have on young people’s mental health.
Earlier this month, Facebook-owned applications, Instagram and WhatsApp suffered a six-hour long outage globally.
Fortune’s billionaire tracking website said Zuckerberg’s personal fortune dropped by nearly $6 billion to just under $117 billion, as soon as the news of outage spread.