Meta (Facebook) buys Within, creators of VR fitness app ‘Supernatural’ – TechCrunch
A day after Facebook’s rebranding to Meta (and the simultaneous and unceremonious abandonment of the Oculus brand), the company announced it was buying Within. The Los Angeles-based firm is the developer of Supernatural, a Beat Saber-style workout app, Supernatural has been one of the true success stories of virtual reality fitness, featuring high-impact, movement-based cardio workouts.
This is a sensible acquisition as the company seeks to expand its VR and other ambitions in a kind of metaverse. Supernatural was also, without a doubt, a particularly hot product over the past year and a half as more people looked at home solutions amid widespread gym closures and other workout stresses.
“We’re excited because our partnership with Meta means we’ll have more resources to develop and bring you even more music, more creative ways to train, more features and more social experiences for VR. And of course, we’ll always be launching new workouts every day, ”wrote Within CEO Chris Milk and Head of Fitness Leanne Pedante in a blog post.
The company adds that its current staff of coaches, choreographers and managers will remain on board after the acquisition. Supernatural will operate as part of Meta’s Reality Labs division.
“Together, we will also explore ways to improve future hardware to support VR fitness applications, encouraging other developers to bring new fitness experiences to VR,” wrote Jason Rubin, vice president from Meta de Play, in a separate article. “We believe that fitness will be a huge success in virtual reality where several third party fitness applications can be successful.
Founded in 2015, Within has raised over $ 50 million, most recently including a $ 40 million Series B in 2017. This round was led by Temasek and Emerson Collective. The other investors are Andreessen Horowitz, 21st Century Fox, Raine Ventures, WPP and Macro Ventures.
Financial details of the acquisition were not disclosed.