Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg has announced the expansion of his metaverse Horizon Worlds to smartphones and computers, moving beyond virtual reality headsets. The 3D avatar-based social platform has started rolling out its first Meta Horizon world to mobile and web in an early access state. The initial experience available is Super Rumble, a free-for-all shooter game. Meta plans to add more experiences and worlds to the platform in the coming months.
According to Meta, only a small number of people will have access to the platform on the web or the Meta Quest app on Android during the initial rollout. The company stated that early access will gradually be expanded as they gather feedback and improve the experience. Meta believes that the metaverse should be accessible to everyone, regardless of the device they use.
Meta’s decision to bring Horizon Worlds to more devices is aimed at making the experience available to a larger audience. While Meta has not disclosed its monthly active user statistics, a report from The Wall Street Journal in October 2022 suggested that it was less than 200,000. Currently, Meta’s social platform is only available in Canada, France, Iceland, Ireland, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States.
Interestingly, blockchain-based metaverse platforms like Decentraland and The Sandbox took a different approach. They initially launched as PC and web-based experiences before venturing into virtual reality. Decentraland introduced its browser-based 3D virtual world in February 2020, while The Sandbox launched its Alpha on PC in November 2021. However, both platforms have yet to release an official virtual reality port.
In other news, Meta avatars in Horizon Worlds have finally received an update that many users have been waiting for – virtual legs. Initially, there was criticism that Meta’s avatars lacked virtual legs despite the company’s significant investment. During Connect 2022, Meta promised that virtual legs would be added in a future update. The legs functionality was reportedly introduced in the Quest Home space as a test version update, and now it has made its way to the Horizon Worlds app.
Overall, Meta’s expansion of Horizon Worlds to smartphones and computers marks a significant step in bringing the metaverse experience to a wider audience. With more experiences and worlds planned for the platform, Meta aims to make the metaverse accessible to everyone, regardless of their device.
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