Marne Levine, chief business officer at Facebook owner Meta Platforms, said the company is in a period of “transition” similar to its difficult shift a decade ago from desktop apps to mobile apps where ads were unproven.
“We’re making significant investments in big bets that will pay off in the long term,” she said in an interview with The Information CEO Jessica Lessin at the Women in Tech Leadership Forum, referring to Meta’s move toward what it calls the metaverse. “And that might mean that there’s a short-term…slowdown.”
But there are clear differences between the Meta of today and the Facebook of 2012. Back then, people were flocking to mobile phones and to Facebook, whereas Meta’s apps experienced their first decline in daily active users last quarter. And the idea behind the metaverse—in which millions of people would don special headsets and interact with each other using digital avatars of themselves—depends on technology that hasn’t been built.