Facebook owner Meta Platforms Inc has given a preview of its first physical store, set to open on May 9th.
The store, located at the main campus for Meta’s Reality Labs unit, features a floor-to-ceiling screen for showcasing company products and rooms for testing video calling devices. The minimalist design gives a similar feel to an Apple store.
Set to open on May 9th, the store will sell hardware products developed by the Reality Labs unit, such as Oculus VR headsets, smart glasses, and video-calling devices.
Meta is still hugely dependent on advertising revenue from its online platforms, and has been focused on diversifying its business model. The opening of a physical store represents a major push into the hardware arena, built around CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s vision of a “metaverse”.
Zuckerberg believes the metaverse will represent a giant leap in the way humans interact with technology, but has warned that the size of the project means that results cannot be expected immediately.
Meta also gave a demonstration at the store of the progress it has made with augmented reality technology, showcasing a conference call between a mix of human users and VR avatars.