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There's 'a very big question' surrounding the metaverse, early Facebook investor Reid Hoffman says – Yahoo Finance

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Meta (FB) may be too early on investing so much to build the metaverse, says early Facebook investor Reid Hoffman.
"Metaverse is one of the [technologies] where it's inevitable it happens, but when and how is a very big question," the LinkedIn founder and "The Startup of You" author said on a new episode of Yahoo Finance Presents (video above), later adding: "I don't see the signs yet that tell me that the metaverse is going to happen."
Hoffman explained that "the signs I look for are: Which application really starts taking off? … I think entertainment is the first thing that you're going to really see. And obviously, the proponents of the metaverse will say: 'No, no… the pandemic has accelerated into it. We're doing, you know, video interviews in it. We're doing, you know, work in it. We're doing our shopping in it, we're doing our dating, and we're doing all this stuff.' And I think that's still a fair ways away."
After shocking investors in early February by outlining $90-$95 billion in expense spending this year as the social media giant builds out Zuckerberg's futuristic metaverse, the company is pulling back on that target amid slowing top line growth.
The new goal, which reflects more of an effort to protect profit margins, is now $87-$92 billion.
"These investments are going to be important for our success and growth over time," Zuckerberg told Wall Street analysts on a recent earnings call. "I continue to believe that we should see them through. But with our current business growth levels, we are now planning to slow the pace of some of our investments."
The pullback on spending comes after a mixed quarter for Meta, one where it rebounded from a terrible fourth quarter but was still not showing the same growth rates as in the past.
Meta's stock is down 41.6% so far in 2022 amid the larger rout in risk assets.
Hoffman said that he has confidence in Facebook getting its investment spending right given its track record.
"Facebook is an extremely capable company," Hoffman said. "They have done a lot of smart investing and building of things."
That said, the tech investor then expanded on his initial question: "If you're building the technology because you think the scale go to market with is three-to-five years from now, you have to be building really hard right now. … if it's not five years from now, maybe seven, then it's technology that you should be building four years from now."
Asked if Facebook was early on building so rapidly for the metaverse today, Hoffman replied: "They might be. That's the primary question."
Brian Sozzi is an editor-at-large and anchor at Yahoo Finance. Follow Sozzi on Twitter @BrianSozzi and on LinkedIn.
Read the latest financial and business news from Yahoo Finance
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Meta's losses show the metaverse's costly risk – Insider Intelligence

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Facebook parent Meta launches startup accelerator with India’s IT ministry in metaverse push – TechCrunch

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Meta Platforms is looking at India’s burgeoning startup ecosystem as it bolsters its bet on the metaverse. The social juggernaut has partnered with the Indian IT Ministry’s startup hub to launch an accelerator in the country to broaden innovation in emerging technologies, including augmented reality and virtual reality, officials said Tuesday.
MeitY Startup Hub and Meta’s effort, called XR Startup Program, will work with 40 early-stage startups and help them in research and development and developing workable products and services. Each startup will also receive a grant of over $25,000, the American giant said.
The program, supported by Meta’s $50 million XR Programs and Research Fund, will initially hand pick 80 startups to attend a bootcamp. It will also help startups with finding customers, inking relationships and raising funds, Meta said.
Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Minister of State for Electronics & Information Technology and Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, said the program is especially aimed at helping encourage technology innovation in smaller cities and towns.
The XR Startup Program is the latest of Meta’s growing participation in the South Asian market’s upskilling efforts. The firm, whose Facebook and WhatsApp services identify India as their largest market by users, partnered with Central Board of Secondary Education, a government body that oversees education in private and public schools in the country, to launch a certified curriculum on digital safety and online well-being, and augmented reality for students and educators in the country.
The program — to be implemented by four Indian institutions, including IIT Delhi — will also host a “grand challenge” for innovation in categories including education, healthcare, entertainment, agritech, climate action, sustainability and tourism, the American giant said.
“India will play a pivotal role in defining future technologies. Decisions and investments made here in India now shape global discussions on how technology can deliver more economic opportunity and better outcomes for people. It is critical that we help to create an ecosystem that will enable India’s tech startups and innovators to build the foundations of the metaverse,” said Joel Kaplan, VP of Global Policy at Meta, in a statement.
Meta’s interest with working with startups in India is also not newly found. The company has backed three startups in the country, including social commerce platform Meesho and online education group Unacademy.
3 views: Is the metaverse for work or play?

“India’s rapid tech adoption combined with a vast pool of tech talent puts the country in a vantage position for shaping the future of the internet,” said Ajit Mohan, VP and MD of Facebook India, in a statement.
“For this future to be equitable, it will require active participation from all stakeholders, including developers, businesses, creators, policymakers, and entrepreneurs. We are excited to collaborate with MeitY Startup Hub and hope that the XR Startup Program will act as a catalyst to unlock the use of immersive technology across sectors like education, healthcare, agritech and tourism, not only in India but across the globe.”

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WHAT IS QUILVIUS (QVUI)? LET'S EXPLORE THIS UPCOMING METAVERSE CRYPTO PROJECT – Asianet Newsable

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WHAT IS QUILVIUS (QVUI)? LET’S EXPLORE THIS UPCOMING METAVERSE CRYPTO PROJECT  Asianet Newsable
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