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(Pixabay)

The company faces challenges on multiple fronts, but it was a dismal earnings report Wednesday that triggered the sudden collapse in its share price.

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FILE - In this Oct. 12, 2021 file photo, Hadrien Gurnel, software engineer EPFL's Laboratory for Experimental Museology (eM+) explores with a virtual reality helmet the most detailed 3D map of the universe with the virtual reality software VIRUP, Virtual Reality Universe Project developed by Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, in St-Sulpice near Lausanne, Switzerland. (Laurent Gillieron / Keystone via AP)

The metaverse is the latest buzzword to capture the tech industry’s imagination. Facebook is hiring thousands of engineers in Europe to work on it, while video game companies are outlining their long-term visions for what some consider the next big thing online.