Facebook parent Meta Platforms Inc’s FB foray into the metaverse got a thumbs up from Goldman Sachs GS analysts led by Rod Hall, who gave the firm a substantially higher price target.
What Happened: Meta Platforms got a 12-month price target of $355 from the analysts, according to a CNBC report. This would represent an 89% upside from the current level.
On Thursday, the company’s shares closed 6.2% lower at $188.07, according to Benzinga Pro data.
The analysts said the two main emerging players in virtual reality and augmented reality arenas were Apple Inc AAPL and Meta Platforms.
Goldman noted that Meta is already shipping products and the company’s Quest Pro VR headset is due to be shipped in the fall. The bank noted the headset’s “attractive hardware pricing and compelling experiences,” according to the report.
See Also: How To Buy Facebook (FB) Shares
Why It Matters: Goldman’s analyst noted the different approaches being taken to the metaverse by Meta and Apple.
The Tim Cook-led company is “likely aiming at an extension to its already powerful platform and Meta looking to build a base of users through attractive hardware pricing and compelling experiences,” CNBC reported the analysts as saying.
Goldman reportedly prefers VR to AR, anticipating 19.4 million VR headsets to be sold worldwide in 2023, more than the 18.9 million put forward by the International Data Corporation (IDC). Goldman said this figure could touch 34 million by 2024.
The bank said that AR is “awaiting core science breakthroughs,” which are more than five years away, according to CNBC.
Apple-focused journalist Mark Gurman said earlier this year that he was told “pretty directly” the iPhone maker won’t follow an approach to the metaverse where users can escape "completely to a virtual world.”
Meta Platforms is expected to report earnings on April 27. In the fourth quarter, the company had earnings per share of $3.67, which missed the estimated EPS of $3.84.
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