Meta have revealed their latest earnings figures. And it’s not good news.
In fact, it’s terrible news being the first time that Meta (Facebook)’s quarterly revenue has declined year on year. That’s not a dip in a rate of growth. That’s a dip. Full stop.
The dip may only be 1% but it’s an indication of the direction of travel and a pointer to where the third quarter’s revenue (to be revealed October) could be heading. Meanwhile Meta’s overall profits have fallen 36 percent to $6.7 billion. And the numbers are in for the firm’s controversial Reality Labs division (which have been coming under fire for burning through cash to make their metaverse real). They lost a not inconsiderable $2.8 billion in the quarter.
Don’t worry. We have a plan…
And all this the day after Meta increased the price of their popular Quest 2 VR headset, sending out an interestingly desperate message to investors.
So is a massive extra $100 on the price of a Quest 2 going to make all the difference?
We’d suggest not as Meta’s worries would appear to run far deeper than any cheeky cash grab can fix.
The combination of competition for eyes, minds and time from the likes of the ‘trendy’ TikTok and a genuine concerted effort from Apple to limit Facebook’s tracking (and thereby audience) for iOS users have only piled onto the larger elephant in the room, that advertisers are increasingly feeling the pinch and losing faith in Meta’s power to deliver the hearts and minds they need during the downturn.
Meanwhile Meta’s (or more specifically CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s) belief in the metaverse as their way back to their peak and their willingness to spend and spend and spend to make that dream happen sits on a knife edge between shrewd futurism and mis-guided fanboy-ism.
It’s a tough place to be in and putting up the price up on what is probably your ONLY well-received product (in a fledgling market that you NEED to succeed) would appear to be a questionable move.
And there’s more
Round about now we could say ‘what goes around comes around’, citing Meta’s huge fines for breaches of privacy, the open use of data by bad actors, dubious activity from key members of staff, scrapping of projects, ditching their developers conference and rampant overspend triggering displeasure from investors but we’re far too polite for any of that.
We’re sure next week will be different.