Meta opens first physical store

Category: Technology/Innovations


Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. showcase / ˈʃoʊˌkeɪs / (v.) – to show something in the most attractive way

    The event showcases the company’s latest products.

  2. portal / ˈpɔr tl / (n.) – an entrance leading to a building

    The gate served as the portal to the castle.

  3. concrete / ˈkɒn krit / (adj.) – clear or specific

    Please give us concrete action plans so we’ll know exactly what to do.

  4. classy / ˈklɑ si / (adj.) – having characteristics that make someone or something special or attractive

    The car looks expensive because of its classy design.

  5. replicate / ˈrɛp lɪˌkeɪt / (v.) – to copy or do something that can produce the exact same result

    Arashi’s popularity is something that no other band can replicate.


Read the text below.

Facebook parent Meta has opened its first physical store — in Burlingame, California — to showcase its hardware products like virtual and augmented reality goggles and glasses.

The store, which is open to the public as of Monday, is made for people who want to test out products like Ray-Ban Stories, Meta’s smart glasses and sunglasses, along with the Portal video calling gadget and Meta Quest 2 virtual reality headsets.

Shoppers still have to order the glasses from Ray-Ban but can buy the other products at the store.

“It’s a very concrete step toward moving away from social media and ads that mislead people and elections and spying and data and all those things to a very physical representation of clean, classy, well-designed, cool hardware that makes you go, ah,” said Omar Akhtar, research director at Altimeter, a technology investment firm.

Akhtar said he “didn’t believe in virtual reality” until he sat and tried on the Quest 2 headset for the first time — and believes this will be the same for others who are able to put on the goggles and try it out. Apple pioneered physical retail stores in Silicon Valley, and Meta, which owns Instagram and Facebook, is likely hoping it’ll replicate at least some of that success.

“The truth of it is that physical things never went away, and they’re never going to go away,” Akhtar said. “Everybody realizes that even if we are going to step into the virtual world, we’re going to need to access it with hardware.”

This article was provided by The Associated Press.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

  • Meta’s first physical store is made for people who want to test out gadgets like smart glasses and virtual reality headsets. Would you be interested in visiting the store? Why or why not? Discuss.
  • Facebook has been facing accusations of spreading fake news and breaching data privacy laws. Do you think the opening of Meta’s physical store can help Facebook clean up its image? Why or why not? Discuss.

Discussion B

  • Akhtar said he didn’t believe in virtual reality at first until he tried on the Quest 2 headset. Do you foresee virtual reality becoming more common in the near future? Why or why not? Discuss.
  • What kinds of virtual reality applications would you want to experience (ex. tourism, education)? Why? Discuss.