Facebook has confirmed its future in virtual reality and the metaverse by rebranding its name to Meta and spending billions to build hardware and software. But the company has, at least so far, shared little with the public about how well its early bets are performing. On April 12, Meta announced they are testing new features in Horizon Worlds, its social virtual reality (VR) app, which will help creators sell virtual items and earn money.
Meta CEO Mark Zukarburg confirmed creator monetization and metaverse economy are really going to be important, in a conversation with Vidyuu Studios.
“There are two new things that I wanted to talk about. One is in-world purchases – basically the ability to sell virtual items and access things inside Horizon Worlds which is part of the commerce equation,” said Zuckerberg in a video posted by Vidyuu Studios.
What is Horizon World?
In early December, Horizon Worlds launched on Oculus Quest VR headsets in the US and Canada; after that, in a very short time, it reached 300,000 monthly users. According to Zuckerberg, all users with access to Horizon Worlds will be able to buy and sell globally.
VR and Quest are key parts of the company’s metaverse vision, but it seems that the metaverse is an interconnected digital world that bridges VR and AR. In addition to more familiar platforms like phones and computers, the company recently announced ‘Personal Boundary’ for Horizon Worlds and Horizon Venues. Personal Boundary will be set by default to make it look like there is a distance of almost 4 feet between your avatar and others.
What are the achievement and specialties?
One of the big draws to Worlds is the ability to create custom rooms using in-app tools, to which Meta says its users have now created over 10,000 worlds like Rec Room. Prior to securing a $145 million funding round, valuing Rec Room at $3.5 billion, the kid-friendly platform announced in 2020 that it was hosting over three million user-created levels.
Eventually, Meta also hopes to fuse all of its Horizon apps to make them more accessible, which could even include the ability to connect with non-VR users too. That would put Meta much closer to its goal of running its own metaverse which you might define as an interconnected, immersive experience that allows for persistent identity, items, avatar, etc.