- Meta abandoned a two-year project that aimed to develop an Apple Watch rival, Bloomberg reported.
- A source told Bloomberg the watch had been slated for release next year and cost about $349.
- Meta has tightened its budgets recently, slowing investment in projects.
A source told Bloomberg that employees working on the project, codenamed Milan, were told this week that development of the smartwatch was being stopped.
The source said the project had been underway for at least two years with release slated for 2023 at a cost of about $349.
Bloomberg saw a prototype of the watch, which featured two cameras — one on the front and one on the back.
The source said that the Fakebook owner was working on other wrist devices instead.
The smartwatch was developed by Reality Labs, a division of Meta responsible for developing new products to fit into CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s metaverse vision, according to Bloomberg.
The metaverse is a science fiction term referring to a future version of the internet accessed primarily through immersive technologies, rather than screens.
Although Zuckerberg says his long-term plan is to keep investing in the metaverse, the company appears to be tightening its budget.
He said on a results call in April that Meta is “slowing the pace” of investment in numerous projects, and Reuters reported in May the company was cutting spending on projects at Reality Labs. The metaverse division cost Meta $10 billion last year.
Zuckerberg told shareholders in May he expected investment in developing metaverse technology to lose it “significant” amounts of money for at least three years.
Meta also imposed a hiring freeze at Facebook in April due to slow revenue growth.