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Meta Is ‘Afraid of Apple’ Right Now: Report

  • A Meta worker told Bloomberg the company is in the “‘afraid of Apple’ stage.”
  • Mark Zuckerberg’s company will vie with Apple in the mixed-reality headset market.
  • Zuckerberg has pointed out that Apple’s headset will be far more expensive than Meta’s.

For the first time in its history, Meta is set to go head-to-head with Apple in the gadgets game. And at least one worker at Mark Zuckerberg’s company has reportedly said that employees are already feeling the pressure.

“We’re in the ‘afraid of Apple’ stage,” one Meta worker told Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman.

The two companies will compete to sell mixed-reality headsets after Apple first announced its plans to sell the Vision Pro earlier this year. While Meta has a healthy head start — the company revealed its first headset in 2017 — Gurman points out that Apple could be a formidable opponent for Mark Zuckerberg.

After all, Apple is known to bide its time when considering entering a new product category, waiting until it can offer an experience that trounces the previous competition.

The iPhone is the best example of this strategy. Some 15 years after the smartphone first revolutionized the tech industry, Apple now dominates the US market for cellular devices, accounting for over half of all the smartphones sold, Counterpoint Research told The New York Times last month.

Apple workers have “confidence” that the company will come out with the better product, but the general sentiment among Meta employees is “a bit different,” Gurman wrote, adding that the company could change some aspects of its product and its marketing based on the performance of Apple’s device.

Apple, in contrast to much of Meta’s previous marketing of the its Quest headsets, has been marketing the device less as more of a productivity, communication, and entertainment device, with less of a focus on traditional gaming.

Woman using Apple's Vision Pro in an immersive FaceTime call.

Apple is positioning its Vision Pro as a productivity and entertainment device first and foremost, with gaming as more of an added bonus.


For his part, Zuckerberg has appeared to have been largely dismissive of Apple’s product. Shortly after Tim Cook unveiled the Vision Pro in June, the Meta CEO criticized Apple’s Vision Pro at a companywide meeting, pointing out the headsets were very different and dubbing Apple’s “not the one I want,” The Verge reported.

Last month, Zuckerberg said in an interview that he’d initially had some worries that Apple could have demoed a breakthrough headset in June that meant Meta would have to “start over” on its own product, but he’d found that not to be the case.

Instead, Zuckerberg said Apple appears to have chosen to target a different part of the market with the Vision Pro’s $3,499 price point. For comparison, Meta has been working to lower the prices for its headsets. Its entry-level Quest 2 is $299 and the upcoming Quest 3 will cost $499. Its most expensive headset, the Quest Pro, is priced around $1,000.

man sitting on a couch wearing the meta quest 3

The Meta Quest 3, priced at a fraction of Apple’s Vision Pro, launches October 10.


Though, the Meta CEO has acknowledged the race with Apple in the past. Last year, he told employees that Meta and the metaverse were in “very deep, philosophical competition” with Apple.

Spokespeople for Meta and Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Apple’s Vision Pro is scheduled to launch “early next year.” Meta’s Quest 3 launches Tuesday.

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