JVTech News “This industry does not forgive”, Microsoft buries this revolutionary project
Dissatisfied with its position, the multinational had seen the big picture and rushed to invest in a new innovative industry in 2017. However, despite all its efforts to develop this revolutionary project, Microsoft failed to realize it. Thus, the American company was forced to end it recently.
Microsoft’s ambitious project, unknown to the general public
In 2017, the tech giant acquired AltspaceVR, a company that had ambitions to build the metaverse before Mark Zuckerberg tackled the subject by renaming Facebook to Meta.
Founded in 2015, the platform is a virtual environment that aims to provide an immersive social experience for users. Specifically, AltspaceVR allowed people with a virtual reality headset to meet online by embodying avatars to do various activities in the digital world.
In a delicate financial situation, the company was then rescued by Microsoft 6 years ago. After being acquired by the giant, the project was officially presented as an online social platform enhanced by VR, it is clear that this is similar to the current definition of a metaverse.
“When AltspaceVR first launched, our vision was to create a place where people around the world can connect and socialize in real time. We knew that Virtual Reality (VR) could be a fun place for immersive gaming, and most importantly, we believed in the power of social VR to bring people together, connect and create experiences to separated. says Microsoft.
“This industry is unforgiving”, AltspaceVR is no more
Although innovative for the time, the platform must meet the new requirements with the enthusiasm around the metaverse. Through an official press release, Microsoft announced the sad end of this metaverse-like precursor. That’s right, AltspaceVR will officially close its virtual doors in less than 2 months, on March 10th. However, according to Microsoft, this disappearance should allow the company to focus more specifically on its next VR project: Microsoft Mesh.
Mesh is the extension of Microsoft Teams video conferencing app for people with VR headsets. This 3D platform used by professionals allows users to collaborate in an immersive digital workplace.
“As we look to the future, we see the opportunity for virtual reality to expand beyond the consumer to the enterprise, and now we have an even bigger goal: a more open, accessible and secure version of immersive experiences in the metaverse. To achieve this, we made the difficult decision to retire the AltpaceVR platform on March 10, 2023 and focus on supporting immersive experiences powered by Microsoft Mesh. explains Microsoft.
The news comes as the firm has just laid off a significant portion of its business (around 10,000 jobs) “to remain a relevant company in this unforgiving industry”.
Apart from the resource and energy savings associated with shutting down AltspaceVR, it turns out that the metaverse is not among the multinational’s priorities. With a recent investment of 10 billion in OpenAI, Microsoft’s strategy is firmly focused on artificial intelligence for 2023.