According to a new report, Facebook is planning to change its name next week.
The tech giant wants to be known as more than a social media platform. The new name is expected to align with Facebook's intended rebranding goals.
Facebook was founded by Mark Zuckerberg and Eduardo Saverin in 2004. They named it after directories usually given to American students.
The original intention was for the platform to help students on campus get to know each other better. Hence, it was more like a social network for students.
It was more successful than earlier thought. But it could not stay that way for long. Zuckerberg was advised to spread its wings and not limit it to campuses in the United States.
The Facebook of today is a result of the decision that followed. But Facebook is about to change its focus once again.
Mark Zuckerberg wants to build the metaverse, and he wants to rebrand Facebook to reflect this new focus. Well, after coming under fire from regulators around the world for some of its practices, it's about time the tech behemoth experiences some changes.
What Is The Metaverse?
It is an effort "to combine virtual and augmented reality technologies in a new online realm." Although it is not fully understood, it aims to create a virtual world where people escape.
It is expected to be a space like an internet where end-users can interact with one another in real-time, everything from attending meetings to meeting friends, all under one umbrella.
Since Facebook also owns WhatsApp and Instagram, the three platforms may be under a parent company, like Google is under its parent company, Alphabet.
Earlier this week, Facebook announced its intention to hire 10,000 employees to work on creating the metaverse. This is in addition to its already over 10,000 employees who have been building consumer hardware like AR glasses.
In summer, he told The Verge about his plans to be known as a metaverse company. Plans for this have been underway, but recent unpleasant events surrounding the social media app have made this change even more essential.
Francis Haugen, a former Facebook employee, now turned whistleblower, leaked several damning internal documents to The Wall Street Journal amidst a data breach rumor. He also testified against them before Congress. This has sown seeds of distrust in the hearts of users. It's no wonder that antitrust regulators are trying to pull the company apart.
But since the summer of this year, Facebook set up a dedicated metaverse team and even promoted its head of AR and VR, Andrew Bosworth, to Chief Technology Officer.
Speaking about the metaverse to Casey Newton of The Verge, Zuckerberg explained: It is "going to be a big focus, and I think that this is just going to be a big part of the next chapter for the way that the internet evolves after the mobile internet. And I think it's going to be the next big chapter for our company too, really doubling down in this area."
A Needed Overhaul
Well, with the bad publicity Facebook has gotten in past weeks, an overhaul of its reputation is not a bad idea.
It is expected that at the company's annual Connect conference on October 28, Zuckerberg will announce the name change. There has, though, been no confirmation.
The new name remains a 'closely guarded secret.' It is said that not even those in its full senior leadership are aware of it.
One source speculated that the new name is linked to Horizon. After creating a workplace collaboration called Horizon Workrooms, Facebook adjusted the name of its VR version of Facebook-meets-Roblox to Horizon Worlds. Although this VR version is still unrevealed, its name tweak has many people guessing.