(CTN News) – Meta, the parent company of Facebook, has opened its first physical store – in Burlingame, California – to showcase its hardware products, like virtual reality goggles and augmented reality glasses.
The Meta store, which opened Monday, allows people to test out items like Ray-Ban Stories, Meta’s AR glasses, and sunglasses, as well as Portal video-calling gadgets and Oculus virtual reality headsets.
Meta is opening its first store as VR headsets inch closer to mainstream reality
Although the glasses must be ordered from Ray-Ban, the other products can be bought in the store.
Omar Akhtar, research director at Altimeter, a technology investment firm, was quoted as saying, “It’s a definite step away from social media and ads that mislead people and elections and spying and data and all those things to a very physical representation of clean, classy, well-designed, cool hardware that just leaves you awestruck.”
In Akhtar’s words, he “didn’t believe in virtual reality” until he tried on the Oculus headset for the first time – and he believes this will be the same for others who put on the goggles and try it out.
Meta, which owns Instagram and Facebook, is likely hoping to replicate at least some of Apple’s success in physical retail stores.
Physical things never disappeared, and they will never disappear,” Akhtar said.
We realize that even if we step into the virtual world, we will have to access it with hardware. (AP) VM