San Francisco— Apple and Meta (formerly Facebook) are in a “very deep, philosophical competition” to build the metaverse, according to Mark Zuckerberg.

In a meeting with employees, he said that Meta would position itself as the more open, cheaper alternative to Apple, which is expected to announce its first Augmented Reality (AR) headset later this year, reports The Verge.

Meta is directly competing with Apple to determine “what direction the internet should go in”, he apparently told the staff.

“This is a competition of philosophies and ideas, where they believe that by doing everything themselves and tightly integrating that they build a better consumer experience,” Zuckerberg was quoted as saying.

Meta is banking upon its big-time foray into Metaverse, with plans to invest $10 billion over the coming years.

Nearly 37 organisations and companies, including Microsoft, Meta, Epic Games and Sony have formed the ‘Metaverse Standards Forum’ for industry-wide cooperation on interoperability standards needed to build the open metaverse.

Apple is not part of the group and according to Zuckerberg, for the metaverse, “it’s not really clear upfront whether an open or closed ecosystem is going to be better.”

Zuckerberg told employees to brace for an “intense period” ahead.

“Apple is going to be a competitor. I think that that’s pretty clear, but it’s actually a very deep competitor,” he said.

Apple is likely to launch another augmented reality (AR) in 2025 that will be more affordable from the one the tech giant is set to launch next year to join the metaverse race.

Analyst Ming-Chi Kuo claimed that the iPhone maker will launch a higher performance and lower-cost AR headset variant in 2025.

According to Kuo, Apple AR/MR shipments may reach 10 million units as soon as 2025 or 2026, thanks to the second-generation Apple AR/MR product segmentation strategy and ecosystem.

The tech giant is also reportedly planning to launch RealityOS for its headset. (IANS)