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Meta announces updates to WhatsApp and Messenger that will take a privacy-centric approach to building interoperable messaging services

Meta announced updates to WhatsApp and Messenger, which will use a privacy-centric approach to build an interoperable messaging service to comply with the new European Union law, the Digital Markets Act (DMA). WhatsApp will require third-party clients to provide proof of ownership of visible identifiers to third-party users when connecting or joining. This proof is built by encrypting and signing identity verification tokens with a signature from a third-party service. WhatsApp uses the standard OpenID protocol (with some minor modifications) and JSON Web Token (JWT Token) to verify user-visible identifiers by periodically obtaining public keys from third-party servers. Additionally, according to Brytfmonline, this update will allow integration of Web3, blockchain dApps, and other social networks with WhatsApp.

Reality Labs, the Metaverse division of Meta, suffered a loss of US$4.65 billion in Q4 2023, with revenue of nearly US$1.1 billion.

Tech giant Meta's Q4 2023 earnings report showed that its Reality Labs division had a loss of $4.65 billion and revenue of nearly $1.1 billion in the previous quarter. This was the largest quarterly operating loss for the division since Q4 2020, when Meta first included Reality Labs' financial data in its reports. Reality Labs' total revenue in 2023 was slightly below $1.9 billion, with over half of that revenue coming from Q4 when it released Meta Quest 3. Its total operating loss for 2023 was $16.1 billion, a YoY increase of 17.5%. Meta CFO Susan Li stated that due to the development of AR and VR products and "further investment in expanding the ecosystem," Reality Labs' losses are expected to "significantly increase YoY." Additionally, Meta's total revenue for 2023 was $134.9 billion, exceeding the expectations of Wall Street research firm Zacks and growing 16% from 2022.

Meta settles with Qatari billionaire over crypto scam ads

Tech giant Meta has reached a settlement and publicly apologized to Qatari businessman Wissam al Mana over the use of his image in fraudulent cryptocurrency ads. The ads were posted on Facebook in 2019 by "malicious third parties" without al Mana's knowledge or consent and were deemed "false, misleading, and defamatory." The details of the settlement are currently confidential, but Meta has agreed to take "strong measures" in the future to combat cryptocurrency scams. Al Mana stated that the ads caused damage, trouble, and embarrassment to his reputation. In a statement, Meta expressed regret and offered a sincere and unconditional apology to al Mana for the reputational damage, trouble, and embarrassment caused by these false ads posted by malicious third parties. In addition, al Mana's lawyers have demanded that Meta share the identity information of the buyers of these fraudulent cryptocurrency ads, including their IP addresses, names, and places of residence. (Protos)

Metaverse division Reality Labs' third-quarter operating loss reached $3.74 billion

On October 26th, Meta's metaverse department Reality Labs reported an operating loss of $3.74 billion in the third quarter, with a cumulative loss of nearly $25 billion since the beginning of 2022. Reality Labs also stated that its operating losses in VR/AR will increase significantly year-on-year due to ongoing product development and investments to further expand the ecosystem.