Facebook is said to be changing its name, with a rebrand intended to reflect a new focus and to move on from its sticky past.
The Verge, citing a source with direct knowledge of the matter, claims that the social media giant will change its name as soon as next week. It seems CEO Mark Zuckerberg will discuss the move at the company’s annual Connect conference on October 28.
It’s not suggested what that new name will be – apparently it’s a closely guarded secret – but we do learn some of the reasons behind the purported move.
Facebook the social network is now just one of a number of disparate products operating under the Facebook brand. The company also has the likes of Instagram, WhatsApp, and Oculus all thriving in their own way as semi-separate entities. A Google/Alphabet-like shift to an overarching company name would make a certain amount of sense.
The report also hints at the toxicity that has accumulated around the Facebook brand. Years of controversies and scandals, including a recent damning whistleblower testimony and a total shutdown of its services, have clearly taken their toll on the company’s reputation.
But the official line will seemingly be related to one of those alternative products we listed above. Following its success with Oculus in the world of VR headsets, Facebook is presently going full steam ahead on building augmented reality headsets and large-scale AR experiences, with more than 10,000 employees committed to the task.
Facebook also recently promoted its head of AR and VR, Andrew Bosworth, to the position of chief technology officer.
Many now feel that AR devices will replace our smartphones, and that the so-called metaverse will be the connective tissue that binds it all together. Think of the metaverse as a more immersive, three dimensional take on the internet.
Back in July, when announcing the creation of his metaverse team, Zuckerberg revealed that he saw Facebook becoming known as a metaverse company rather than a social media company over the next five years.
If that’s the Facebook mission statement, then changing its name would indeed appear inevitable.