Reports are swirling that Chinese tech titans Tencent and Bytedance are ready to give their metaverse divisions a staff slimdown — hundreds of job cuts, to be exact. Tencent is reportedly “adjusting staff” in its extended reality division, while Bytedance has its sights set on slicing staff in its Pico headset branch.
Tencent and Bytedance Say Goodbye to Virtual Reality Staff!
Tencent and Bytedance, two of the leading Chinese tech firms, are reportedly planning to let go of hundreds of workers from their metaverse development teams. Tencent, well-recognized for its software, is reverting its plans to venture into the metaverse hardware market, resulting in job losses for hundreds of employees.
The company’s plans experienced a shift, so they let their 300 employees know that they should start looking for other opportunities. They noted that their extended reality division, the one dedicated to creating metaverse products, was no longer going to be in service. They admitted that staff adjustments had to be made, but reassured everyone the division wasn’t going anywhere.
Tencent had been attempting to develop a specialized metaverse control device, but due to the substantial financial investment required and an unfavorable outlook for its profitability, the project was eventually abandoned.
Bytedance in Hot Water
Pico, the hardware division of Bytedance’s metaverse headset, is reportedly struggling and looking to reduce hundreds of jobs. The South China Morning Post has reported that some sections of the company may experience cuts of up to 30%, with higher-level personnel being affected.
The launch of the Pico series was a resounding success, giving the company a 15% foothold in the expanding Asian markets of virtual reality headsets, a market that was otherwise almost entirely dominated by Meta’s offerings.
CEO and founder of Pico, Henry Zhou was confident the company would sell more than a million headset units, an impressive target for the fledgling company. But, amid a global effort to limit the production of metaverse-based hardware and software, large corporations are cutting back on their spending in this area.