Meta’s social VR platform, Horizon, grows tenfold in just three months
A metaverse in which everyone does whatever they want in virtual reality seems to be Meta’s (ex-Facebook the company) main goal. Now, The Verge reports about its main social VR platform, Horizon, and the fact that it has experienced quite substantial numbers in growth in the last three months.
Meta’s VR platform, Horizon, has grown tenfold over the last three months
Although Meta has had some issues with Facebook’s revenue and ads on iOS (Apple’s App Tracking Transparency had Facebook lose some money on ads), it seems the company is not only seeing a decrease. The company seems to think the future is in virtual reality and the metaverse, and this is why it decided to rebrand to Meta a few months ago. Currently, Meta’s highest-profile bet right now is the social VR platform for the Quest headset, called Horizon Worlds. Zuckerberg called it the “core to our metaverse vision” during a virtual Meta all-hands call. Additionally, during the same call, the company’s chief product officer, Chris Cox, announced some pretty substantial numbers in an update about Horizon’s user growth.
In fact, the user base of Horizon Worlds has grown tenfold since early December. It was rolled out to all Quest users in the US and Canada, and its user base is now up to 300,000 people. This number includes users of Horizon Worlds and Horizon Venues, Meta spokesperson Joe Osborne confirmed.
Horizon Venues is a separate app for attending live events in VR, and it uses the same avatars and basic mechanics as Horizon Worlds. The user base number doesn’t include Horizon Workrooms, which is a VR conferencing interface reliant on an invite-based system. Horizon Worlds was in private bate for creators before it was rolled out officially in December. The platform lets users build custom environments to hang out and play games in as legless avatars.
This week, Meta announced that 10,000 separate worlds have been built on the platform so far, and the private Facebook group for creators now has over 20,000 members.
However, it’s been only a few months since the platform was made widely available, so it seems it’s too early to tell if this rapid growth will continue, or whether these users will remain on Horizon Worlds over time. The daily user count was not disclosed, only the monthly users number, and usually, the monthly users’ number is higher for such social platforms.
Additionally, Meta hasn’t disclosed how many Quest handsets have been sold so far, and this also makes it hard to determine whether Horizon’s success is, actually, well, a notable success. Estimations from third parties state that the Quest had hit over 10 million sales around the world.
Zuckerberg stated that there will be a Horizon version for mobile phones later this year, aiming to bring the metaverse experience to more platforms than just VR. He also stated that the “deepest and most immersive experiences are going to be in virtual reality”, but users would be able to access the worlds from Facebook or Instagram, and probably more apps in the future.
As you may have heard, Facebook’s stock has recently been plummeting, and Horizon Worlds could be a means to escape the negative trend. However, Meta doesn’t make any money through Horizon Worlds yet.
Horizon Worlds has still a long way to go in order to be successful. Quite understandably, Meta has to solve some issues with content moderation, as well as underage users in the metaverse, on top of having to make Horizon reliable and stable enough for millions of people to use. For example, recently there were lots of people unable to join a Foo Fighters concert held in Horizon Venues.