The Federal Trade Commission has started a legal battle to prevent Meta Platforms from acquiring the virtual reality app developer Within Inc, Reuters reported. The FTC which had sued in July to prevent the deal from materializing said their primary aim behind its move is to prevent creating a monopoly in the virtual reality fitness app segment and is seeking the imposition of an injunction to stop the deal.
Interestingly, while all eyes will be on the trial that starts Thursday, the FTC has also separately challenged two of Meta’s previous acquisitions, Instagram and WhatsApp, the lawsuit for which were filed in 2020. The outcome of the court case would have a serious impact on Facebook parents’ future considering the huge investment it has already made in the AR and VR segments which it has described as the future of computing. It will have to come up with its own apps which again is going to be time-consuming if started from scratch.
As Reuters stated, Facebook may put forth the argument that the FTC hasn’t been to the point in ‘defining the relevant market and that it competes with a whole range of fitness content, not just VR-dedicated fitness apps.’ It might also argue that the FTC ‘underestimated the competition in the market for VR-dedicated fitness apps.’
It was in October 2021 that Facebook opted to buy Within for a sum that is estimated to be around $400 million. That again was just a day after it had changed its name from Facebook to Meta which pointed to the development of a mega virtual universe named the metaverse.
With a keen interest in tech, I make it a point to keep myself updated on the latest developments in the world of technology and gadgets. That includes smartphones or tablet devices but stretches to even AI and self-driven automobiles as well, the latter being my latest fad. Besides writing, I like watching videos, reading, listening to music, or experimenting with different recipes. Motion picture is another aspect that interests me a lot and maybe I’ll make a film sometime in the future.