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Microsoft Follows Suit With Meta, Shuts Down Metaverse Team

2 mins
Updated by Kyle Baird
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In Brief

  • Microsoft has shut down its industrial metaverse team, which had about 100 employees.
  • The team was focused on building interfaces and features in industrial settings.
  • Microsoft has said in the past that it believed in the metaverse, though its recent actions suggest a more nuanced position.
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Microsoft has laid off its industrial metaverse team consisting of around 100 employees. The team was focused on creating metaverse features in industrial settings.

Microsoft is the next big tech firm to cut back on its metaverse plans. The company announced that it was shutting down its industrial metaverse team, which was only established about four months ago. About 100 employees have been let go, according to the report.

This particular metaverse team was called the ‘Industrial Metaverse Core’ and focused on industrial settings. Specifically, it aimed to build interfaces for operating control systems in electrical power plants and robotics and transportation networks, according to The Information.

Microsoft is among several prominent technology companies that have carried out layoffs. Other firms in this category include Google, Amazon, Salesforce, and Meta. These actions have led some to believe that the era of big tech’s allure has ended.

Still, the big tech firms continue to make big inroads with their technological developments. Microsoft is the center of attention for ChatGPT, the revolutionary AI service that it funded. The company recently announced an integration of ChatGPT with its Edge browser.

Microsoft Believes in the Metaverse, Yet Shut Down Some Efforts

Microsoft’s decision to shut down the metaverse team is interesting, given that it has shown enthusiasm for the niche. It has worked on its HoloLens mixed reality device for years, though there is no indication whether it will be commercially successful. Executives at the company have also described the sector’s significance as we head into an increasingly digital world.

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella himself has talked about the benefits of the metaverse. Certainly, the acquisition of companies like Altspace VR and the ongoing acquisition of Activision Blizzard points to a metaverse strategy. However, Microsoft announced the decision to shutter the former last month.

Meta Scales Back

Other companies have also tempered ambitions relating to the metaverse. Meta announced that it would shut down Crayta, which it purchased less than two years ago. The company is also closing Echo VR, a metaverse game popular in its ecosystem.

Meta is also on its own acquisition spree, winning a lawsuit against the FTC. Meta can now purchase Within, which the FTC thought was an anti-competitive practice.

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Rahul Nambiampurath
Rahul Nambiampurath's cryptocurrency journey first began in 2014 when he stumbled upon Satoshi's Bitcoin whitepaper. With a bachelor's degree in Commerce and an MBA in Finance from Sikkim Manipal University, he was among the few that first recognized the sheer untapped potential of decentralized technologies. Since then, he has helped DeFi platforms like Balancer and Sidus Heroes — a web3 metaverse — as well as CEXs like Bitso (Mexico's biggest) and Overbit to reach new heights with his...