During its Q1 2023 earnings call, Meta, the parent company of Facebook and Instagram, discussed its use of artificial intelligence (AI). Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg hailed AI as one of the two major technological waves alongside the metaverse that the company is prioritizing on its roadmap. He noted that AI already drives content discovery, and on Facebook and Instagram, 20% of user feed content is suggested by AI and comes from accounts that the user does not follow. This makes up 40% of the content seen on Instagram. Meta’s work on AI is also improving monetization, according to Zuckerberg, with Reels monetization efficiency increasing 30% on Instagram and increasing 40% on Facebook quarter-over-quarter.
Zuckerberg suggested that generative AI, which is capable of creating media and content, can be used to create more engaging advertising experiences or create advertisements on behalf of clients. He also suggested that AI can be used by businesses, especially small businesses, to create agents that are able to handle a larger amount of customer interactions. These tools are expected to be valuable for everyone from regular people to creators to businesses.
CFO Susan J. Li said the company will resume hiring once it completes layoffs in April and May, and noted generative AI as one of the biggest areas where the company will be increasing headcount. Responding to a question on the company’s AI use internally and how that factors into long-term hiring, Li said the company does not have enough visibility yet into how AI will make the workforce more productive, but it’s something that they are excited about.
Despite suggestions that the firm is moving away from the metaverse, Zuckerberg confirmed that his firm remains focused on it. He said that the two areas would work together, noting that mixed reality involves using AI technologies to combine the physical world with digital objects. Zuckerberg also said that Meta intends to create an “AI-centric operating system” for its AR headsets and believes it “will be the basis for the next generation of computing.”
In conclusion, Meta believes AI will play a critical role in content discovery and monetization on Facebook and Instagram, and it will continue to focus on both AI and the metaverse. The company sees generative AI as a valuable tool for businesses and a means to make employee work more productive. Meta’s long-term plan is to create an AI-centric operating system for its AR headsets which it believes will be the basis for the next generation of computing.