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Friday, June 9, 2023

Microsoft Reportedly Shutting Down Industrial Metaverse Focused Group

Microsoft Reportedly Shutting Down Industrial Metaverse Focused Group – Microsoft,  the Washington-based software giant, appears to be leaving the metaverse in favor of other projects. According to The Information, the firm announced internally the disbandment of the Industrial Metaverse Core group, a branch of the company tasked with bringing the metaverse to industrial settings.

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The group, which was founded only four months ago, acted as a link in the implementation of metaverse interfaces to operate electrical power plants, industrial robotics, and transportation networks. By linking software to this endeavour, the division was part of the attempts to introduce the metaverse to industrial environments.

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The group’s 100 employees were all laid off. However, Microsoft has stated that the group’s products would continue to be maintained in the future. The company stated: “We are applying our focus to the areas of the industrial metaverse that matter most to our customers and they will see no change in how they are supported. We look forward to sharing additional information in the future.”

In January, Microsoft announced a round of 10,000 layoffs as part of a restructuring process. The latest turn of events signals that Microsoft is redirecting some of its resources from metaverse programs to areas such as artificial intelligence (AI).

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Other metaverse initiatives appear to have been impacted by Microsoft’s layoffs, with employees from Altspacevr — which announced its closure in March — and the Mixed Reality Tool Kit also being laid off. Since January, Microsoft has been investing in AI-based startups. The business announced a “multi-year, multibillion-dollar investment” in Openai, the company behind the creation of GPT-3 and its Chatgpt interface, on January 23. 

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In addition, as part of this collaboration, Microsoft recently announced the integration of Chatgpt in Bing, its search engine, as well as Edge, its web browser. To accompany this move, Satya Nadella, Microsoft’s CEO, stated:  “AI will fundamentally change every software category, starting with the largest category of all – search.”

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