According to Active Replica, they have been working on a “web-based metaverse” for around three years. The start-up team did so because they assumed that technology would be the cornerstone of “how people connect virtually”.
With Active Replica, Mozilla wants to support its own work on virtual conference technology, which the company has been pursuing for years with the so-called hubs. Active Replica will join the Mozilla Hubs platform to develop solutions for Mozilla and take advantage of its scale and capabilities to go global.
The acquisition will also be important for on-demand acceleration, personalized subscription levels, on-board improvements, and adding new features to the Hubs engines, Mozilla said.
Despite the alignment of Hubs and Active Replica, Mozilla avoids using the word metaverse in its own announcement. This could be related to the existing public perception of this technology, which is fairly negative. For example, Facebook parent Meta has been heavily criticized for losing much too much money with their version of the metaverse and has already laid off people as a result.
The day after the announcement, Mozilla announced that it had also acquired machine learning company Pulse, signalling Mozilla’s focus on the future of the web.