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Report: Meta Rejects Partnership With Google on Virtual Reality Headsets

Meta Rejects Partnership With Google on Virtual Reality Headsets

Meta reportedly turned down Google parent company Alphabet’s suggestion that the companies partner on virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR) and mixed reality (MR) headsets.

Alphabet had suggested that Meta use Google’s Android XR software platform to power Meta Quest headsets, Reuters reported Friday (March 1), citing a paywalled article by The Information.

Reached by PYMNTS, a Google spokesperson declined to comment on the report.

Meta did not immediately reply to PYMNTS’ request for comment.

Meta plans to develop new VR headsets using Quest software and is talking with hardware companies about building those devices, according to the report.

Currently, Meta’s Quest headsets use a version of Google’s Android operating system, the report said.

Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg met with LG Electronics’ top management, including CEO William Cho and President Park Hyoung-sei Wednesday (Feb. 28) to discuss synergies between the two firms around next-gen extended reality (XR) device development, including the Meta Quest 3 headset and Ray-Ban Meta smart glasses, the companies said in a Wednesday press release.

The companies are also discussing combining their strengths across products, content, services and platforms to drive innovation in the virtual space.

The discussions come a month after Meta reported that its Reality Labs division, which develops the company’s VR headsets, crossed the $1 billion revenue mark for the first time during the fourth quarter of 2023.

Reality Labs had been losing billions over the last few years. Zuckerberg attributed the division’s turnaround to the Quest 2 and Quest 3 headsets enjoying a strong holiday season.

“I still expect this next generation of AR/VR and MR computing platforms to deliver the realistic sense presence that will be the foundation for the future of social experiences, and almost every other category of experiences as well,” Zuckerberg said Feb. 1 during Meta’s quarterly earnings call.

Zuckerberg’s comments came a day before Apple released its first MR headsetVision Pro, with 600 new apps and games. The move is significant for Apple, which is determined to make a strong first impression with its offering in a market dominated by Meta.