Meta, the virtual reality (VR) platform that offers a ‘game engine’ for the creation of virtual worlds and applications, announced today that it will be closing its doors in September. The company said that this decision was made following the recent acquisition of VR software development company Playful Corp by Google, Inc.
Meta said that Playful's acquisition by Google means that Meta's founders and employees will be joining Google's team to help build out an incubation program for VR developers and other aspects of Google's VR efforts.
Meta is a venture-backed startup based in New York City, with offices in San Francisco and London. The company recently raised $2 million from investors including Andreessen Horowitz, Highland Capital Partners and Founders Fund. Meta Group, the world's largest independent provider of digital transformation services, today announced that it has made a major investment in Horizon VR, a virtual reality (VR) technology company. Meta Group has acquired all issued and outstanding shares in Horizon VR for a total consideration of $8 million USD. The acquisition will allow Meta Group to accelerate its plans to develop and commercialise cutting-edge technologies for enterprise customers worldwide.
"We are excited to welcome Horizon VR into the Meta Group family," said Martin Greenwald, Meta Group CEO and co-founder. "We believe that integrating Horizon VR's unique expertise with our own will provide leading companies with a single point of access to advanced solutions for the future."
Horizon VR is one of the leaders in immersive content creation and distribution using VR headsets such as HTC Vive, Oculus Rift and Samsung GearVR. The company offers an integrated suite of tools including 3D design, animation and rendering software; real-time game engine; custom-built hardware; cloud infrastructure; as well as professional services such as project management and training. The company has decided to go back to its roots and become a pure hardware company. It will be a platform that supports both mobile and desktop, and will include an operating system (OS) as well as an SDK, allowing developers to build applications directly on top of the OS. The OS will be built by Microsoft, but open-source, which means that anyone can contribute to it.
HOW META BECAME THE HEAD OF VIRTUAL REALITY?
Meta is an industry veteran who has built and shipped VR experiences for some of the world's largest brands. He has been a key player in the development of several major VR platforms and continues to focus on building first-class content that will appeal to a broad audience.
Meta was previously the head of social at Oculus, where he led the company's worldwide virtual reality community. Before Oculus, Meta worked as a game designer at various game studios including Electronic Arts and Microsoft Studios. In college, he studied fine arts, visual design and film studies at Carnegie Mellon University.
Meta was one of the first companies to develop and release a consumer VR headset, the Meta 2, in 2016. It was followed by the Meta S in 2017 and the Meta 1 Pro in 2018. Meta has also been behind some of the best-selling VR experiences in history — including Google Earth VR, which has been downloaded over 200 million times since its launch in 2015.
But it wasn't always this way for Phillips. He originally studied physics at MIT before getting into computer science at Stanford University. After graduating from Stanford with a bachelor's degree in computer science and electrical engineering, he went back to MIT to get his master's degree in electrical engineering.
Today, by kicking out the horizon company, Meta has managed to rule the virtual reality and to empower as the best!