Facebook launches "Horizon", its virtual reality world
The social network wants to generalize the use of virtual reality, so far mainly aimed at video game players.
Facebook announced Wednesday the launch in 2020 of its virtual reality world. Named Facebook Horizon, it will be accessible to anyone registered on Facebook and equipped with an Oculus virtual reality headset. To enter it, the user will first have to create an avatar. They will then be able to wander through virtual and customizable environments, interact with other members, watch videos, and play games.
Facebook Horizon will replace Oculus Rooms and Facebook Spaces, the virtual reality experiences launched by Facebook in 2016 and 2017, which already made it possible to communicate with other users. However, they were confined to private environments, where Facebook Horizon will be more like a massively multiplayer game, with common areas and others whose access will be limited. Oculus Rooms and Facebook Spaces will disappear on October 25.
With this new tool, Facebook wants to generalize the use of virtual reality on the social network by offering an open world where users will spend time to exchange with their knowledge and consult media. The company did not give further details regarding the presence of ads in Facebook Horizon.
Making virtual reality accessible
Facebook became interested in virtual reality in 2014 with the purchase of Oculus, a pioneer company in this sector, for $ 2 billion. At the time, it was developing one of the first virtual reality headsets on the market, the Oculus Rift, for video game players. Under the leadership of Facebook, Oculus has grown strongly and is expected to sell more than one million virtual reality headsets by the end of the year. But the co-creators of the company, who had joined Facebook at the same time as their company, left the social network one after another following disagreements of strategic orders. For Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, the future of virtual reality is indeed in the social. “Soon it will be the era of augmented reality and virtual reality. And what distinguishes these technologies is that they allow you to be present in a place and interact with those around you,” explains the executive in an interview with the Point. “When you are facing someone who has his nose on a smartphone, you do not feel his presence. With virtual and augmented reality, you can interact with your loved ones.
It will be possible to play on Facebook Horizon, but for Mark Zuckerberg, the heart of the project lies in social interactions. oculus.com
Mark Zuckerberg has now the cubits frank to make his project happen and hopes that as many members of his social network will be attracted by Facebook Horizon and not only the most technophiles. As such, Facebook insists on the accessibility of its virtual world, which everyone can build at will thanks to intuitive creation tools.
Harassment and the distribution of inappropriate content, which is common on other virtual reality platforms, were also addressed: moderators will be present in the common areas to ensure the safety of exchanges.