Reggie Fils-Aime Doesn’t Believe In Meta’s Metaverse

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Reggie Fils-Aime doesn’t think Meta’s idea of ​​the metaverse was set up to be a success. The former Nintendo of America boss thinks companies like Meta treat “the metaverse” as nothing more than a buzzword. He also doubts that Meta is innovative enough to achieve metaverse success.

Fils-Aime told Bloomberg at SXSW that he has a definition of the metaverse that doesn’t quite fit Meta’s business model.

“The Metaverse is a digital space where you interact with your friends in a social and gaming-like environment,” he said. “So it’s social. It’s digital. There is an opportunity to really interact with friends and people who have the potential to become friends.”

Reggie thinks the metaverse, or at least elements of it, already exist in games like Fortnite and Roblox. He points to the big, not strictly gaming-focused events that take place in Fortnite, such as concerts, as an example. He also believes that Roblox’s wide range of experiences is another great example.

Meta’s inability to succeed with the metaverse comes down to two big points, according to Fils-Aime.

“To be innovative, you really have to think about the consumer first, and I don’t think they do,” he said. “I think they think about ad revenue first… you have to think about your consumer… your customer. You have to think about marketing new and different ideas…. Those are the things that drive innovation.”

VR just isn’t there yet

He also doesn’t think Meta has a good track record with physical product releases. Reggie points out that despite Facebook’s acquisition of Oculus, VR setups generally haven’t arrived at a place he sees as a success.

“The last I saw was that in total, not just Oculus, a total of about 20 million VR devices have been sold,” he said. “When I was running Nintendo, that was a good year — a year — in terms of hardware resale.”

That ties into his second big point, which is that he doesn’t think a VR-focused approach to the metaverse will ever be successful. Fils-Aime says he believes in Augmented Reality over Virtual Reality. Things like Pokemon Go and the Nintendo 3DS are what he sees as successful AR experiences and functionalities.

“I don’t think it’s ready for prime time,” he said, saying he’s tried almost every type of VR headset. “Doesn’t mean it won’t happen. But I don’t believe it will be an experience that you are busy 100 percent of your time. Or even 100 percent of your entertainment time.”

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