F8 has traditionally been where Meta announces its major initiatives, and showcases its next generation research. But due to COVID and other disruptions, it’s now been called off for two of the past three years.
As explained by Meta:
“Similar to years past, we’re taking a brief break in programming and will not hold F8 in 2022 while we gear up on new initiatives that are all tailored towards the next chapter of the internet: building the metaverse. Similar to the early stages of the web, building the metaverse will be a collaborative effort at every stage – with other companies, creators and developers like you.”
That will mean less insight into Meta’s plans – but then again, it is still running its ’Conversations’ business messaging event (May 19th), and last year’s Meta re-brand, the company’s biggest announcement in probably a decade, was made at its ‘Connect’ conference, not at F8, which will also still be held later in the year.
So it’s probably not a huge loss – or at least, it won’t have a big impact in terms of sharing insight about the company’s strategic vision.
And as Meta notes, it’ll give it more time to concentrate on building the metaverse, the next level of social interaction, at least as Meta sees it. The metaverse concept holds much promise, but as we’ve seen from initial tests and issues, there’s a long way to go before it’s anywhere close to a workable, safe reality.
You can expect there to be many challenges within that, and Meta will likely need all of its PR power, aside from its internal development, to map out its vision.
Really, I’m more looking forward to the Connect AR/VR conference anyway, but F8 has been particularly helpful in the past for gleaning insight about the platform’s algorithms and other strategic workings.