Meta is ‘not an innovative company’ and its vision for the metaverse probably won’t succeed, former top Nintendo exec says

Meta is 'not an innovative company' and its vision for the metaverse probably won't succeed, former top Nintendo exec says
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Reggie Fils-Aime, a former top exec at Nintendo, has been criticized by Meta’s vision for the metaverse.AP Photo/Dima Gavrysh

  • A former top Nintendo exec has suggested that Meta’s vision for the metaverse won’t work out.

  • In an interview with Bloomberg, Reggie Fils-Aime also said Meta was “not an innovative company.”

  • Meta has thrived on acquisitions or from being a fast follower, he said.

Meta is “not an innovative company” and its vision for the metaverse probably won’t succeed, a former top Nintendo executive has said.

Reggie Fils-Aime, the former COO of Nintendo of America, told Bloomberg’s Emily Chang that Meta had either “acquired really interesting things” or “been a fast follower of other people’s ideas” – and that small, innovative companies were more likely to be the future of the metaverse.

The word “metaverse” refers to a version of the internet that’s accessed via immersive technologies such as virtual-reality and augmented-reality headsets. It’s the new focus of Mark Zuckerberg, who rebranded Facebook as Meta in October 2021.

Fils-Aime retired from the Nintendo in 2019 after 15 years at the Japanese video gaming giant.

In an interview with Bloomberg at the South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, on Saturday, Fils-Aime said: “Facebook itself is not an innovative company. They have either acquired interesting things like Oculus and Instagram, or they’ve been a fast follower of people’s ideas.”

He said of Meta’s vision for the metaverse: “I don’t think their current definition will be successful.”

Fils-Aime told Bloomberg he believed that small, innovative companies like Epic Games that were doing “really compelling” things would drive the metaverse forward.

He said Meta’s focus was on advertisers, because digital advertising accounted for 98% of its revenue. But “in order to be innovative, you really need to be thinking about the consumer first,” he added.

Meta did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.

Meta’s stock has slumped by 45% year-to-date. It came under intense selling pressure last month after the company’s fourth-quarter earnings report showed that Facebook’s daily active user base shrank for the first time ever.

Phil Libin, a tech executive, has previously compared today’s hype around the metaverse with Soviet propaganda he experienced as a child. He’s also said that Meta’s vision for the metaverse is an “old idea.”

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