Microsoft is continuing its cost-cutting measures across the globe, with a 5% ratio cut impacting various departments. The latest department affected is the metaverse division, with the company ending its AltspaceVR program.
AltspaceVR is a social platform that allows users to create and attend virtual events. Microsoft acquired the company in 2017 as part of its virtual worlds plans.
The decision to end the program was part of the company’s broader effort to streamline its mixed-reality offerings. However, it’s a loss for the social VR community and the metaverse. AltspaceVR is one of the pioneers in the social virtual reality space and has a dedicated user base.
In addition to ending the AltspaceVR program, Microsoft has also laid off workers in the Hololens division. This move comes after a court ruled that preliminary tests of the Hololens device caused soldiers to experience nausea and other side effects.
This ruling has raised concerns about the safety and effectiveness of the device, leading to a reassessment of the division’s workforce. The Hololens is a mixed-reality device that overlays digital information onto the user’s field of view.
It has been developed primarily for military and industrial use, but it’s unclear how this ruling will impact the future of the device.
The company’s decision to lay off workers in the Hololens division suggests that the device’s development may be put on hold or re-evaluated. The court’s ruling is a reminder that companies need to be transparent and communicate the safety aspects of their products to users.
According to a statement from Microsoft, the company has learned a lot from its experience with AltspaceVR. As a result, the company plans to use that knowledge to build a platform that incorporates all, providing opportunities for creators and users alike.
Microsoft says the company remains fully committed to the metaverse. Therefore, AltspaceVR’s discontinuation is a step towards creating an inclusive and accessible platform. Microsoft’s statement also emphasized the importance of community building and engagement in the metaverse.
The company plans to continue to invest in technology and resources to build a metaverse that is inclusive and accessible to all. Microsoft also says it will continue to work with partners and industry leaders to create an ecosystem that supports creators and users.
According to the statement, despite the layoffs, Microsoft is still committed to the metaverse and has other projects coming in 2023. In addition, the company is investing in its metaverse technology and is trying to bring its metaverse to life.
Microsoft’s decision to discontinue the AltspaceVR program indicates the company is moving forward with its metaverse vision. However, it is also a reminder that not all projects will succeed.
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