Microsoft Partners With Meta, Bringing Office365 To The Metaverse

Finally! Meta has a significant ally in its metaverse race. 

On October 11, During Meta’s 2022 Connect Conference, Meta announced its partnership with Microsoft to bring a range of Microsoft Office 365 products into Meta’s virtual reality (VR) platform.                                    

Aiming to entice companies to work in virtual environments, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella says Teams video calling app would integrate with Meta’s “Quest” and newly unveiled “Quest Pro” VR headset allowing people to gather in a virtual meeting room.

On the Windows end, Nadella added that Microsoft 365 would come to Quest in a way that lets users interact with content from productivity apps like Excel, Word, PowerPoint, Outlook, and Sharepoint.

Xbox Cloud Gaming isn’t left out, as it makes its way to Meta’s Quest VR headsets, allowing Xbox Game Pass Ultimate subscribers to stream games. Although the experience will not be as immersive as a native VR experience for Xbox games, users can use an Xbox controller and play games on a massive screen projected inside a Quest headset. 

The Quest Pro headset, now packed with new features, is said to have “more intuitive” feedback on its hand controllers and “real-time expression tracking,” where a user’s virtual avatar mimics his facial expressions, such as smiles and winks.

In addition, Microsoft’s enterprise-level mobile device and identity management applications will be compatible with Meta’s Quest and Quest Pro headsets, allowing organizations to manage and secure VR headsets in their corporate networks just as they would computers and other devices. 

At the conference, Nadella referred to the ongoing remote work policies initially implemented due to COVID-19 restrictions, saying the pandemic has brought about a “once-in-a-lifetime” opportunity for formerly office-based work environments.

Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg added,” As in-person work ramps up, we want everyone to have the ability to feel like they’re present,” this cross-device experience will be the foundation of the virtual office of the future.”

Though excited about the future of remote working, one must wonder how this partnership and its development will play out in the coming months, in terms of adoption cost, especially for African companies. 

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Image Source – Meta

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