Apple is rewarding engineers up to $180K bonuses to keep them from going to Meta

Tim Cook
Tim Cook (Image credit: Apple)

What you need to know

  • In November, Facebook changed its name to Meta to separate its various technology divisions from its social media platform.
  • Since then Meta has been recruiting employees from Apple's engineering and augmented reality departments.
  • Apple is encouraging employees to stay by offering up to $180K in Stock Bonuses.

Back in November, Facebook officially changed its name to Meta in order to better separate the titular social media platform from the company's other technological projects. Meta CEO Mark Zuckerburg stated the company will focus on the metaverse and connecting people, thus the name. At this time, it was also revealed that Reality Labs, which runs the company's VR/AR projects is separating to be a more distinct entity. As such, Meta has been working on acquiring new talent and has even poached Apple employees from the augmented reality, artificial intelligence, software, and hardware engineering divisions. It's worth noting that Apple has been doing the same of Meta employees.

According to Bloomberg, Meta has hired about 100 engineers from Apple in the last few months. In a surprise incentive to keep engineers from leaving, Apple has recently rewarded bonuses from $50,000 to $180,000 to its high performers.

The payouts aren't part of normal Apple compensation packages, which include a base salary, stock units and a cash bonus. Apple sometimes awards additional cash bonuses to employees, but the size of the latest stock grants were atypical and surprisingly timed, the people said. They were given to about 10% to 20% of engineers in applicable divisions.

This is a big deal and rather out of the ordinary for the tech giant as this is not something Apple has really done in the past. But not everyone walked away happy. In fact, some engineers who didn't receive bonuses are rather upset at not being included.

A competitive rivalry between Meta and Apple will likely continue to grow over the coming months and years as the two companies battle for the market lead in areas like smartwatches, AR/VR, and other technologies.

Rebecca Spear
Gaming Editor

Gaming aficionado Rebecca Spear is iMore's dedicated gaming editor with a focus on Nintendo Switch and iOS gaming. You’ll never catch her without her Switch or her iPad Air handy. If you’ve got a question about Pokémon, The Legend of Zelda, or just about any other Nintendo series check out her guides to help you out. Rebecca has written thousands of articles in the last six years including hundreds of extensive gaming guides, previews, and reviews for both Switch and Apple Arcade. She also loves checking out new gaming accessories like iPhone controllers and has her ear to the ground when it comes to covering the next big trend.