Meta is in a marketing battle for the next generation of computing with Quest headsets, which has a field of rivals, including Apple and its “spatial computing” headgear called Vision Pro.
Meta Quest 3 is set to start selling before the end of the year, and Kaufman will help introduce the product to consumers. “It is a huge step forward for the category,” Kaufman said. “A huge bet for us on all things mixed reality.”
Meta, which changed its name from Facebook two years ago, has invested about $36 billion since 2019 into Meta Reality Labs, the division that covers Quest devices and software. Meta has its own VR world that is playable on Quest called “Horizon Worlds.” This year, some metaverse skeptics had a moment to gloat as Meta, and many companies that were all-in on the metaverse, have reprioritized. But Kaufman said this quiet period of reflection is good.
“The hype cycle for the metaverse concept, having died down a bit, it’s a great thing,” Kaufman said. “It means that we can be heads down.”
Meta has grown its market for VR and mixed reality gear, having sold 20 million Quest headsets, according to The Verge. And people are clearly playing on Quest devices; after all, more than a million people downloaded Roblox when it was released for the first time on Meta Quest in July. Last month, Meta also created a mobile and web version of “Horizon Worlds,” opening access to people who don’t have a Quest headset.
A busy marketing season for Kaufman is coming up, and it’s a crucial moment for the future of Meta: Quest 3 will start selling after an event to promote the device in late September. And Meta is set to release its first, in-house-developed “triple A” video game, “Asgard’s Wrath 2,” in time for the holidays.