Meta, the social media and tech mega-corp, is getting its first-ever physical retail store, along with an online shop. The Meta Store will be selling headsets and offering demos to help people “connect” to the metaverse.

According to Business Insider, the tech company will open the new in-person shop on 9 May 2022 in California. Reportedly, the company, formerly known as Facebook, changed its name last year to Meta to align with and reflect its shift to building its “metaverse” – which it imagined as an immersive, hyper-realistic digital world, and one that requires VR hardware to participate in.

“The best way to understand virtual reality is to experience it,” CEO and founder Mark Zuckerberg said. Zuckerberg also noted that the new store will focus on allowing people to “demo” apps and products, creating “a sense of what’s coming as we build toward the metaverse.”

The company has also appointed Martin Gillard as the new head of Meta Store.

“The Meta Store is going to help people make that connection to how our products can be the gateway to the metaverse in the future,” Gillard said.

“We’re not selling the metaverse in our store, but hopefully people will come in and walk out knowing a little bit more about how our products will help connect them to it,” he added.

The new store, as opposed to a popular trend, will not be placed in an area that will get a lot of foot traffic. It will remain at the Facebook office campus, meaning it will not be open during weekends.

Gillard says that they are trying to learn from their users, at this stage, as quickly as possible.

“It gives us more opportunity to experiment and keep the customer experience core to our development,” he said.

“What we learn here will help define our future retail strategy,” said Gillard, explaining their future plans for Meta Store.

By Zintle Nkohla 

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