Last updated: February 21, 2023, 6:26 PM IST
HONG KONG: Tencent Holdings is in talks with Meta Platforms Inc to distribute its Meta Quest line of virtual reality headsets in China, three people familiar with the matter said.
Talks between Tencent and Meta began last year and have continued in recent months, according to one of the sources with direct knowledge of the matter, adding that the talks are at an early stage and an agreement has yet to be reached on the details.
Tencent and Meta did not immediately respond to requests for comment on Tuesday. The persons did not want to be identified because the conversations are not public.
The Chinese media outlet 36Kr and the Wall Street Journal previously reported on the discussions.
Tencent, the world’s largest video game publisher, had ambitious plans to build both virtual reality software and hardware into an “extended reality” XR unit it launched last June amid growing global interest in the metaverse concept of a virtual world.
But Reuters reported last week that it had decided to stop developing its own XR hardware, in part due to profitability concerns, telling most of the unit’s employees to look for opportunities elsewhere.
At the time, Tencent said it was adjusting some business teams as hardware development plans had changed
One of the main rivals in China’s virtual reality space is TikTok owner ByteDance, which owns headset manufacturer Pico.
Tencent is best known for software that includes a range of games and social media applications. It sells the Nintendo Switch console in China through a partnership with the Japanese gaming company founded four years ago.
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(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and was published from a syndicated news agency feed)