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Now Tencent plans to enter metaverse, may acquire Xiaomi-backed Black Shark for hardware

Now Tencent plans to enter metaverse, may acquire Xiaomi-backed Black Shark for hardware

Several reports have indicated that Tencent is planning to expand into the metaverse space and for this, the company may soon ink a deal with Xiaomi-backed Black Shark, a firm known for its range of gaming smartphones and accessories.

(Image: Reuters) (Image: Reuters)
Story highlights
  • Tencent may acquire Black Shark for $470 million, or about Rs 3,500 crore.
  • With this, Tencent may plan to create AR/ VR based hardware through Black Shark.
  • By itself, it may come up with the software for metaverse experiences.

Metaverse is the new norm for the tech majors and those not planning for it already will certainly begin to do so by this year. Proving it to be true once again, gaming giant Tencent may now be planning its first step into the metaverse, and for this, the company reportedly wants to buy Black Shark.

For those unaware, Black Shark is a gaming smartphone and accessories manufacturer that is backed by Xiaomi. It operates in several countries around the world, including many in Europe, and has come up with several gaming smartphones over the past years. Black Shark 4 and Black Shark 4 Pro are the latest of these, having marked their debut in March last year.

Tencent now reportedly wants to take over BlackShark, in its efforts to play a role in the metaverse. Several sources online have confirmed that the two firms are currently in talks and might ink a deal soon. Though there are no official statements from either side yet, an IANS report suggests that the deal might amount to over $470 million, or about Rs 3,500 crore.

Interestingly, the deal may not be a straightforward affair for Black Shark, as Tencent might require it to undergo a business transformation. It is being reported that Tencent will carry out the acquisition in hopes of having a hardware side to the AR/ VR segment. With that, Black Shark may have to expand beyond its regular production of gaming smartphones.

Once Black Shark is able to do so, we can expect Tencent to be the software provider for VR and AR experiences. With this, the gaming major will be ready to venture into the metaverse in the time to come.

Though the acquisition will be new, this is not the first time that both brands will collaborate on a product. Previously, Tencent and Black Shark worked together for the latter's gaming smartphone - Black Shark 3, in 2020. The new partnership might take this a step further with Black Shark focusing more on accessories like VR headsets than just gaming smartphones.

The speculations are not far from reality, as it is about time that Tencent makes its move to get into the metaverse. Meta and others are already working towards the cause with complete commitment, while other tech giants like Apple are likely to have their own line of mixed reality hardware very soon. With that, Tencent will have to have a presence in either of the aspects to stay relevant in the future of gaming.