Microsoft and Meta Join Forces in a Web3-Focused Partnership

The two tech giants are bringing solutions for work and recreation to the metaverse.
Written by Ashley Bowden
October 12, 2022Updated: October 18, 2022
Someone sitting at a desk using Microsoft 365 in VR
Image: Microsoft

Though plenty of people work remotely these days, their scenery isn’t always limited to their home decor. Eventually, their view might not include any aspect of the physical world. Software giant Microsoft and social media magnate Meta are working together in a new partnership to move offices everywhere into the metaverse.

Microsoft announced in a blog post on Tuesday that it’s working alongside Meta to provide metaverse-based experiences to its customers. Its business software solution Microsoft Teams has seen steady growth over the pandemic, amassing a monthly active user base of 270 million people over the past two and a half years, according to the company.

Now, it’s looking to give those users more immersive experiences with its workplace tools. The company’s foremost initiative on this front is bringing Mesh, its holographic communication solution for Microsoft teams, to Meta Quest virtual reality (VR) devices. This tool enables colleagues to gather in a virtual setting on devices such as smartphones, laptops and mixed-reality headsets. 

While Microsoft’s aim with this initiative is to connect people in virtual spaces as if they were in person, the company is counting on Meta’s VR tech to help achieve this. Meta recently unveiled its newest VR headset called the Meta Quest Pro. The device is outfitted with high-resolution cameras, a curved battery for comfortable wear and other features. It’s slated to go on sale on October 25.  

Alongside connecting people over VR, Microsoft is bringing apps like Word, Excel and PowerPoint into the metaverse as well. These tools will be available on Meta Quest devices, and so will Windows 365, allowing users to stream content from their PCs. 

“We are excited to continue evolving our mixed-reality devices roadmap, leading with our cloud-first approach, and with Windows and Microsoft 365 at the fore,” Jeff Teper, president of Microsoft collaborative apps and platforms, said in the blog post. “All of this advances our efforts to build the foundations of a responsible metaverse with security, compliance and enterprise-grade experiences as foundational to how we will continue to unlock new possibilities for the future of work.”

The company won’t stop its metaverse innovations at the workplace either. Microsoft and Meta are looking into ways they can bring Microsoft’s Xbox Cloud Gaming service to the Meta Quest Store. By doing so, users would gain the ability to stream Xbox games to phones, tablets, PCs, smart TVs and the Meta Quest platform.

With these plans and more on the horizon, both Meta and Microsoft are actively hiring across departments, including engineering, data and analytics, marketing, operations and more.

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