To remain on the top, companies must anticipate the “next big thing.”
Facebook, which came late to the mobile device craze, appears to be trying to avoid its past mistake with two recent forwarding-looking acquisitions. According to a Reuters story posted on its website by Alexei Oreskovic and Malathi Nayak, the latest move involves Facebook’s plan to acquire Oculus VR Inc., a maker of virtual reality glasses for gaming, for $2 billion. This comes after its $19 billion deal for messaging service WhatsApp.
Oreskovic and Nayak say many in the industry believe wearable devices could represent the next big platform shift. Google Inc. is already testing Google Glass, a stamp-sized electronic screen mounted to a pair of eyeglasses, and last week it announced plans to develop computerized wristwatches. They also say Sony unveiled a prototype for a new virtual reality headset accessory for its Playstation 4 games console at the annual Game Developers Conference in San Francisco.
According to the story, Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook cofounder and chief executive, says virtual reality technology could become the next social and communications platform. Zuckerberg reportedly isn’t interested in turning Facebook into a hardware company and says its software and services would continue to serve as the underlying business, possibly realizing revenue from Oculus devices through everything from advertising to sales of virtual goods.
The Oculus deal is expected to close in the second quarter, marking the company's second multibillion-dollar acquisition since mid-February.