Taking a look into the future with Meta
The company led by CEO Mark Zuckerberg published its quarterly figures for the third financial quarter on October 25, 2023. Meta was able to improve its revenue by more than 20 percent compared to the previous year - a positive sign for the Silicon Valley company, especially considering how it was heavily criticized for its Metaverse transformation some time ago.
From social media platform to explorer of virtual reality
When Facebook was founded in 2004, the computer was the main medium for connecting to the internet. Within less than a decade of Facebook acquiring Instagram in 2012, the majority of internet access was via smartphones. Currently, many young people no longer even own a desktop computer.
If Meta has its way, we could well be connecting to the internet mainly via VR headsets in the future. 2D screens could be a relic of days gone by as experiences become more immersive. Augmented, virtual and mixed reality are the buzzwords of the moment, with which Meta wants to help shape the next evolutionary stage of social interaction.
The Quest 3 was also recently launched on the market. It is the first mainstream mixed reality device. This means that when the headset is put on, the user continues to see the physical space around them and can bring digital objects into their environment. In this way, the digital world merges with the "real world", allowing the user to see what is happening in their real environment. Especially in conjunction with meta-AI, this is a promising development with great potential to establish itself in everyday life.
The last quarterly figures
Meta reported a turnover of 34.15 billion US dollars for the past financial quarter. Compared to the same quarter of the previous year, revenue increased by around 23%. Around 98 percent of this revenue comes from advertising that advertisers can place on the platforms. Over 15 billion US dollars were generated in the United States and Canada, which corresponds to almost half of revenue.
There was also a positive trend in terms of profitability. Net profit in the third quarter amounted to 11.58 billion US dollars, an increase of 164 percent compared to the same period last year. Meta reported earnings per share of 4.39 US dollars. These figures clearly exceeded analysts' expectations, to which the share price also reacted positively.
How many users Meta reaches worldwide?
Meta currently estimates that around 3.14 billion people used at least one of its services every day in September. Facebook continues to grow strongly; around 2.09 billion people log in every day - an increase of 101 million users compared to the same period last year. The latest platform called "Threads" is a good example of how well Meta can gain users in a short space of time. Within a week of its release in August this year, the short message platform had already attracted over 100 million users.
How economically viable is the realignment?
The future of Meta is very exciting. However, the "Reality Labs" segment, which includes VR and AR glasses, currently only accounts for 210 million US dollars of total revenue. The majority of revenue still comes from traditional advertising income. It remains exciting to see whether and how Meta manages to change the way we communicate digitally. A revolution like the launch of Facebook is therefore within the realms of possibility, especially when you consider how many users Meta already reaches. An AR headset could therefore be easily integrated into existing services.