As virtual reality and augmented reality continue to gain traction, Apple, the largest company in the world by market cap, has announced plans to enter Metaverse.
Apple CEO Declares Interest to Invest in Metaverse
After Apple CEO Tim Cook expressed interest in Metaverse on January 27, Apple stock rose to 8% after-hours trading. The company announced its Q1, 2022 earnings, and Tim stated that they see great potential in the metaverse space and are investing accordingly.
“We’re always exploring new and emerging technologies, and I’ve spoken at length about how it’s very interesting to us right now.”
Apple shares (APPL) fell about 3% during regular hours to $159.22 but rebounded 8% to $167.23 by the close.
According to Appleinsider, during the conference call, Cook noted that Apple’s App Store hosts a cluster of 14,000 apps developed using ARKit, an AR (augmented reality) developer platform. These applications can be used to access Metaverse thanks to their support technologies. In contrast, Meta plans to use an Oculus headset to immerse users in a virtual reality space.
Originally, the iPhone maker had planned to release an Apple headset this year. The title will support the use of Apple devices for gaming, communication and content consumption. However, a Jan. 14 Bloomberg report says the project could be shelved due to hardware and software issues.
Apple and Metaverse Industries
Despite being one of the largest companies in the world with a market cap of 2.6 tons, Apple still lags behind other tech giants in Metaverse.
Meta (formerly Facebook) changed its name last October to focus on new technologies. Currently, the social media giant is developing the world’s fastest supercomputer to connect users to the Metaverse. Meta has completed the first phase of the new AI project and plans to complete the rest later this year. Although the company experienced such a massive failure on its stablecoin project Diem that it sold it, these developments made it one of the most forward-thinking companies to dive into Metaverse.
In this area, Microsoft competes fiercely with Meta. A few days after Facebook changed its name, Microsoft announced its intention to bring the Metaverse to Microsoft Teams via the Mesh platform. The company combines mixed reality and HoloLens work with video calls and meetings with live-action and animated avatars. Most recently, Microsoft acquired Activision Blizzard for $69 billion to fuel its push into Metaverse games.
But not everyone is convinced of the hype, the positive reviews and the high expectations of the Metaverse. Former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Tesla CEO Elon Musk see it as a marketing buzzword. Playstation creator Ken Kutaragi expressed a similar sentiment, calling it a “pointless” pursuit. Criticism of the new is natural, and only time will tell how the Metaverse evolves.