Almost two decades after Facebook’s launch and massive increase in popularity, the Silicon Valley staple is changing course to maintain its top spot in the digital landscape as it faces new headwinds. Meta is progressing to adjust to a changing climate for tech with product updates and a focus on virtual reality. [tweet_embed] August 11, 2022[/tweet_embed] However, the company is facing a battle on all fronts as it endeavors to hold its position— working to convince consumers and investors to embrace CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s vision for the company’s future while confronting a Federal Trade Commission (FTC) intent on mitigating Meta’s market power, increasing competition from platforms such as TikTok, industry changes impeding ad revenue and the looming threat of a recession. Zuckerberg told investors at the end of July the company is invested on riding two “major technological waves” — artificial intelligence (AI) and the metaverse. The focus on AI leads to more short-term changes, including updates to push recommended content on Instagram and Facebook. The focus on the metaverse is part of a more long-term initiative the company is continuing to invest in. [tweet_embed] August 11, 2022[/tweet_embed] Zuckerberg first revealed the company’s next phase focusing on virtual reality, as well as announced that Facebook was renaming under the metaverse-inspired parent company name Meta, in October, when the company was fresh off another round of increased scrutiny from regulators after a whistleblower leaked internal documents. “I think there’s a lot of attention [on the] monetization strategy,” said Dan Ives, an analyst for Wedbush, about the metaverse focus. “They’re laying the groundwork for what should be a significant opportunity down the road, but in the near-term, this is essentially a company based on Facebook. I think the name change is great from a PR perspective but it doesn’t change the challenges they face 100 percent. And I think there’s still skepticism that they’re going to be successful,” Ives added. On the earnings call last month, Zuckerberg explained the forthcoming updates in the move toward virtual reality. “Given some of the product and business constraints we face now, I feel even more strongly now that developing these platforms will unlock hundreds of billions of dollars, if not trillions, over time,” he said. “This is obviously a very expensive undertaking over the next several years, but as the metaverse becomes more important in every part of how we live — from our social platforms and entertainment, to work and education and commerce — I’m confident that we’re going to be glad that we played an important role in building this.” [tweet_embed] August 11, 2022[/tweet_embed] Zuckerberg’s remarks reassuring investors about the shift to the metaverse came as the company reported a revenue loss for the first time in its history. Meta’s overall revenue fell to $28.8 billion in the quarter ending in June.