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Silicon unit

In a move aimed at streamlining its operations, Meta is set to lay off employees from its Reality Labs division, specifically from the unit responsible for creating custom silicon for the metaverse. According to sources familiar with the matter, the layoffs are scheduled for Wednesday.

Employees were notified about these impending changes via a post on Meta’s internal discussion forum, Workplace, on Tuesday. They can expect to receive official notifications regarding their employment status with the company by early Wednesday morning.

As of now, Meta has not provided official comments on these plans. The exact scale of the layoffs within the silicon unit, known as the Facebook Agile Silicon Team (FAST), remains unclear. FAST currently boasts around 600 employees, according to one of the sources.

FAST plays a pivotal role in Meta’s mission to develop custom chips that power augmented and virtual reality hardware, including products like the mixed reality headsets called Quest and smart glasses created in collaboration with Ray-Ban eyeglass maker EssilorLuxottica. These smart glasses can stream video and interact with wearers through a cutting-edge artificial intelligence virtual assistant.

Meta recently unveiled updated versions of its smart glasses and introduced the Quest 3 headset at the annual Connect conference. In addition to these offerings, the company is also actively working on augmented reality glasses capable of projecting virtual objects onto transparent lenses, alongside accompanying smartwatches.

While Meta has made significant strides in the metaverse realm, it has faced challenges in developing competitive silicon chips. As a result, it has sought the expertise of chipmaker Qualcomm for its current range of devices, including Quest headsets and Ray-Ban smart glasses.

This workforce adjustment reflects Meta’s ongoing efforts to refine its operations and adapt to the ever-evolving landscape of the metaverse, ensuring that its products continue to meet the high standards of innovation and quality in this dynamic field.

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