The word on the street was that ByteDance, the China-based company known for owning TikTok, was reportedly planning to exit the virtual reality market. According to unnamed sources, it was claimed that the individual in charge of Pico, possibly CEO and founder Zhou Hongwei, visited ByteDance’s headquarters where founder Zhang Yiming allegedly communicated the company’s intention to eventually abandon its VR initiatives. ByteDance responded to Reuters, stating that the report from OpenOcean is false and reaffirming its long-term investment plans in the extended reality (XR) business.
The company also mentioned its commitment to maintaining normal product operations and enhancing product technology, possibly referring to Pico and VR. Despite reaching out to ByteDance for further comments, Gizmodo did not receive an immediate response. Pico has not yet announced any new hardware since those statements.
While the company has shared some bundle prices and OpenXR interoperability to encourage more developers to create VR apps for Pico, 2023 has been a year with minimal surprises from what was once considered one of Meta’s major competitors in the VR space. Meanwhile, the “spatial computer,” as referred to by the company led by Tim Cook, is anticipated to be its most complex product launch to date.