Meta, previously known as Facebook, is opening its first retail location. This is being done to sell people its Oculus virtual reality headsets and its idea of the “metaverse,” the company announced Monday.
But it’s not a giant leap into retail. Unlike Apple and other tech companies that have stores in heavy foot-traffic areas such as shopping malls, the Meta Store will open on May 9 at the company’s Burlingame, California, campus. The store will comprise demo areas where people can try, among other products, its Oculus virtual reality headsets and the apps and games that run on them.
The company has dedicated around $10 billion over the next year to develop the metaverse, a virtual world that CEO Mark Zuckerberg believes will become the standard for working, socializing, and gaming. However, we are still years away before this aim is materialized.
Customers will be able to purchase the Quest 2 headset, accessories, and Portal video chat devices at the store. The company’s Ray-Ban Stories smart glasses will be available to try on but have to be purchased online. Meta said it’s also rolling out a “shop” tab on its website.
“Ultimately, our goal with the Meta Store is to show people what’s possible with our products today, while giving a glimpse into the future as the metaverse comes to life — and hopefully demystifying that concept a bit in the process,” the company said.