Meta is set to conduct employee layoffs within its Reality Labs division, particularly the unit dedicated to custom silicon for the metaverse.
Employees at Meta were informed about the layoffs through a post on the company's internal discussion forum, Workplace, as per Reuters. The post mentioned that they will receive updates on their employment status by early Wednesday morning, according to one source.
A Meta spokesperson chose not to provide a statement regarding the plans, on the other hand, the news agency could not ascertain the full scope of the cuts to the silicon unit, known as Facebook Agile Silicon Team or FAST, which currently employs approximately 600 people.
The FAST unit's primary mission is to design specialised chips fuelling augmented and virtual reality hardware for Meta’s Reality Labs division. Meta presently offers a range of mixed reality headsets branded as Quest and smart glasses developed in collaboration with EssilorLuxottica, known for Ray-Ban eyeglasses.
These products are equipped to stream video and engage wearers through an innovative AI-driven virtual assistant.
At its recent annual Connect conference, Meta revealed upgraded versions of its smart glasses and the consumer-focused Quest headset, including Quest 3. Additionally, the company is in the developmental stages of augmented reality glasses with the ability to project virtual objects onto transparent lenses.
Reuters also revealed Meta's ventures into connected smartwatches in conjunction with these AR glasses.
Continuing a trend that started last year, many employees were impacted by a series of job cuts carried out by Facebook's parent company. These reductions encompassed various business and operational units as part of Meta's overarching strategy to eliminate a total of 10,000 positions. The round of layoffs marked the conclusion of the three-part plan initially announced in March.
Several employees from teams, including marketing, site security, enterprise engineering, program management, content strategy, and corporate communications, took to LinkedIn to share news of their job losses. Additionally, Meta implemented downsising measures within units specifically dedicated to privacy and integrity, as evidenced by the posts on LinkedIn.
Earlier this year, Meta made headlines as the first major technology company to announce a second wave of substantial job cuts. This move followed the laying off of over 11,000 employees in the previous fall. The reduction in headcount brought the company's workforce back to roughly the levels seen in mid-2021, marking a shift following a period of rapid expansion that had doubled the company's size since 2020.