Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg has reiterated the company’s investment in artificial intelligence (AI) during the earnings call on Wednesday. He mentioned the word “AI” no less than 27 times during the meeting, emphasizing that it is a “key theme” for Meta’s future.
Zuckerberg’s AI discussion lasted about 11 minutes, during which he outlined the company’s plans for AI and how it would impact Meta’s apps and services. He also touched on the potential benefits of AI and Meta’s ongoing projects in the field.
Meta’s Ongoing Investment in AI
Zuckerberg highlighted that AI is a crucial part of Meta’s strategy and will impact every one of its apps and services. The company’s AI work has already started to boost its family of apps, including Instagram, which saw a 24% increase in the amount of time people spent on it after the launch of AI-powered Reels.
Zuckerberg believes that there is an opportunity to introduce AI agents to billions of people in ways that will be useful and meaningful. He also hinted that Meta’s large language model, LLaMA, could eventually be available to more users. Meta opened up access to it to some researchers in February.
Meta’s Metaverse Plans
Despite the emphasis on AI, Zuckerberg made it clear that the company has not abandoned its plans for the metaverse. During the meeting, he spent about six minutes discussing his plans for AI and less than 90 seconds on the metaverse.
“A narrative has developed that we’re somehow moving away from focusing on the metaverse vision, so I just want to say upfront that that’s not accurate,” said Zuckerberg. “We’ve been focusing on both AI and the metaverse for years now, and we will continue to focus on both.”
Other Companies’ Emphasis on AI
Meta is not the only company that is focusing on AI. Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella mentioned AI and the company’s partnership with OpenAI about 29 times during his opening comments on Tuesday, and Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai used the word at least 33 times during his introductory statements on Tuesday.
Meta’s Plans for AI and its Costs
Meta’s CFO Susan Li mentioned that the company expects to spend about $30 billion to $33 billion in 2023 to support its ongoing build-out of AI capacity to support ads, Feed and Reels, along with an increased investment in capacity for its generative AI initiatives.
AI systems require more computing power, as their training requires the system to sift through a large amount of data. Meta’s head of infrastructure, Santosh Janardhan, had previously warned the company that it had a “significant gap” when it came to adopting AI across its platforms.
In conclusion, Mark Zuckerberg’s emphasis on AI during Meta’s earnings call highlights the company’s ongoing investment in the field. Despite the buzz surrounding AI, Zuckerberg made it clear that the company has not abandoned its plans for the metaverse. Meta’s plans for AI will require significant investment, but Zuckerberg believes that the benefits of AI are worth the cost.