Microsoft president warns that the metaverse is 'not like dying and going to heaven'

Brad Smith
Brad Smith (Image credit: Microsoft)

What you need to know

  • Microsoft president Brad Smith recently discussed the metaverse.
  • The metaverse is a joint augmented reality experience that Meta is working towards.
  • Smith warns that the experience "not like dying and going to heaven."

Microsoft president Brad Smith recently discussed several hot topics, including the metaverse, in an interview with Reuters. While Smith thinks the technology will be important in the future, he tempered expectations for it. He also explained the importance of privacy and digital safety within it.

When Facebook rebranded to Meta, the company shared the idea of a metaverse that it's working towards. It is an augmented reality joint universe that allows people to interact in several ways. Meta plans to hire thousands of people to help create it. It's an ambitious idea that's drawn concern regarding privacy.

"I think (the metaverse) will be very big... and quite important," said Smith. "We have to ensure that it protects privacy, digital safety and protects against disinformation, manipulation. We have a lot to clean up."

Many of the concepts behind the augmented reality universe aren't new. Windows Central Senior Editor Jez Corden claims that "the tech industry's 'metaverse' fad is a load of bollocks." He also highlights that Minecraft is already a metaverse app.

While Smith didn't use the same type of language as Corden, he cautioned people about getting overhyped. "We're all talking about the metaverse as if we're entering some new dimension," he said. "This is not like dying and going to heaven. We're all going to be living in the real world with people."

Smith also noted that Meta likely won't be the only company to create a metaverse, stating, "everyone is going to be entering this."

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella also discussed the metaverse in a recent interview.

Sean Endicott
News Writer and apps editor

Sean Endicott brings nearly a decade of experience covering Microsoft and Windows news to Windows Central. He joined our team in 2017 as an app reviewer and now heads up our day-to-day news coverage. If you have a news tip or an app to review, hit him up at (opens in new tab).

  • Call it what you will, but except for the bornintotheuniverse, shouldn't all other verses have an opt in button rather than an heavily shrouded or non-existent opt out button? By law, not a bylaw and certainly not a moral law because most of these dudes and dudettes have no morals judging by their less than neutral ways and means of product delivery
  • With Windows 365 and a surface hololens my money is on Microsoft having the metaverse and augmented reality glasses replace smartphones
  • Hololens? Most practical to go for a walk.
  • I don't get what all the buzz about the metaverse is, it's been around for years. Minecraft, Roblox, VRChat, Garry's Mod are all some kind of metaverse experience, it's not really a huge revolutionary idea
  • The question isn't "should we have a metaverse". The question is, what is Facebook's intentions behind it? If their primary intention is to harvest human data so they can sell it, then we just have Facebook 2.0. As the saying goes, "follow the money". MS builds products and gets paid by their end-users. Google and Facebook gives their products away to the end-users and gets paid by advertisers. It's a nuanced yet massive difference. Will the "metaverse" be the same?
  • Everything a corporation does is in the pursuit of making money.
  • You missed the point.
  • No I didn't. Facebook's grand plan behind the "Metaverse" is to make ridiculous amounts of money. That's it. Whether you agree with their methods of doing so is irrelevant, that's the purpose.
  • This is why I give my money to the lesser of the evils, MS.