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Meta lost $13.7 billion on Reality Labs in 2022

The company said it expects full-year losses to increase in 2023.

Chris Kerr, News Editor

February 2, 2023

2 Min Read
Reality Labs promotional photography

Meta has reported its fiscal results for the fourth quarter and full year ended December 31, 2022, and its Reality Labs division is still haemorrhaging cash.

Reality Labs, which includes the company's augmented and virtual reality related consumer hardware, software, and content, posted an operating loss of $4.3 billion for the quarter.

That means the segment has delivered an operating loss of $13.7 billion across the entire fiscal year, which is more than the full-year operating loss of $10.1 billion the division recorded last year.

According to Meta CFO, Susan Li, Reality Labs revenue for the quarter was also down 17 percent year-on-year due to lower sales of Quest 2 hardware. Reality Labs expenses totalled $5.0 billion, up 20 percent as a result of employee-related costs and "restructuring-related expenses."

Meta previously suggested it would keep throwing money at Reality Labs despite those losses, and during an earnings call indicated that remains the case.

Reality bites

Discussing those results alongside investors, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg said the company has no reason to believe it needs to rethink its long-term Reality Labs strategy, and believes the Meta Quest 2 "did quite well" in terms of sales.

The long-serving boss also spoke of making the division "more efficient," echoing remarks made last year when Meta announced it would be making over 11,000 layoffs. What does that mean in practice? According to Susan Li, it means more losses are almost certainly on the horizon.

"On Reality Labs, we still expect our full year Reality Labs losses to increase in 2023, and we're going to continue to invest meaningfully in this area given the significant long-term opportunities that we see," said Li, who was responding to a question from an investor.

"It is a long-duration investment, and our investments here are underpinned by the accompanying need to drive overall operating profit growth while we're making these investments."

About the Author(s)

Chris Kerr

News Editor, GameDeveloper.com

Game Developer news editor Chris Kerr is an award-winning journalist and reporter with over a decade of experience in the game industry. His byline has appeared in notable print and digital publications including Edge, Stuff, Wireframe, International Business Times, and PocketGamer.biz. Throughout his career, Chris has covered major industry events including GDC, PAX Australia, Gamescom, Paris Games Week, and Develop Brighton. He has featured on the judging panel at The Develop Star Awards on multiple occasions and appeared on BBC Radio 5 Live to discuss breaking news.

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