“In the near future, we’re focusing on introducing NFTs to Instagram,” the Meta CEO said, adding that he intends to have NFT minting available in the coming months.
Instagram, the video and photo-sharing service owned by Meta, is planning to add non-fungible tokens (NFTs) to its platform, according to CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
In a visit at the South by Southwest conference in Austin, Texas, Zuckerberg reportedly claimed, “We’re working on introducing NFTs to Instagram in the near term.” The Facebook founder did not say when the deployment will take place.
From the conference, Casey Newton, a contributor for the Platformer newsletter, tweeted that Zuckerberg also said he expects Instagram users will be able to mint their own NFTs in the coming months.
When asked when the NFT capability would be available, Meta did not immediately comment.
At #SXSW, Mark Zuckerberg just said that “hopefully” in the coming months you’ll be able to mint NFTs within Instagram
— Casey Newton (@CaseyNewton) March 15, 2022
Meta notably changed its name from Facebook to focus on its Metaverse-related projects in October of last year. For the first time, financial details of its virtual and augmented reality research and development division, Reality Labs, were released in company records from the fourth quarter of 2021, showing losses of almost $10 billion. To be fair, because Meta’s piece of the metaverse isn’t yet operational, it’d be difficult to profit from it.
This isn’t Meta’s first foray into the crypto world. In 2019, the company announced plans to launch “Libra” (later rebranded to “Diem”), a USD-pegged stablecoin that failed owing to regulatory approval issues and community opposition. Although Silvergate Capital purchased the project, several former Meta personnel are currently attempting to resurrect the open-source stablecoin by establishing their own network.
Following Twitter’s notable decision to introduce support for NFT profile images in January, social media businesses have been attempting to incorporate cryptocurrencies and NFTs into their platforms. In December 2020, pornographic site OnlyFans introduced NFT profile images using avatars from Reddit’s own library.
Not only are social media behemoths interested in getting in on the crypto action. Traditional financial institutions are exhibiting an interest in the region, with trademark registrations indicating that American Express, a major credit card firm, may be expanding into the Metaverse.
This week, American Express filed applications with the US Patent and Trademark Office to offer virtual banking and exchange services, cryptocurrency services, and the ability to use its credit cards at an NFT marketplace.
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