Facebook will Open a World in Virtual Reality Unpublished in 2020

Convinced that virtual reality is about to become a major mode of communication, Facebook introduces a new virtual world in which participants can interact through avatars and also create their own spaces.

Facebook is preparing the 2020 launch of Horizon, a virtual social space accessible via Oculus immersive headsets, where user avatars can meet, play and create their own spaces for interaction. The California internet giant presented Wednesday its latest novelties in virtual reality, a technology in which it has invested since the purchase of Oculus in 2014 for two billion dollars.

The members of the new virtual social network will choose the characteristics (skin color, hair, etc.) of their avatar, cartoon characters with just the bust, head and arms, which will then reproduce their movements and can interact with them. other avatars, in a set of “worlds”. The application must be available in test version at the beginning of the year. Previously more basic versions, Facebook Spaces, launched in 2017, and Oculus Rooms will be closed at the end of October.

Avatars will move through “magic portals”
“As everyone can create their own spaces and experiences, Horizon will have the ability to grow, expand and improve over time,” said Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s boss. Helmet screwed on the head and remotes in the hands, users will meet from their living room in sets of cartoons and their avatars can move from one virtual place to another through “magic portals”.

Virtual reality still mainly consists of a world of games and entertainment, with the possibility of immersing yourself in films or documentaries. With Horizon, Facebook adds a social layer with avatars that look like us.

A new world that can evoke that of Ready Player One, a science-fiction novel by Ernest Cline (adapted to film by Steven Spielberg) where humans have abandoned their real world of desolation to live essentially through their avatars in a vast virtual world. In 2014, Mark Zuckerberg hoped that virtual reality would one day attract one billion people, a dream still far away. But several studies predict a takeoff in the coming years of these parallel play universes. According to the firm SuperData, the immersion market (dominated by virtual reality but which also includes augmented reality) has generated $ 6.6 billion worldwide in 2018, a figure that should increase by 442%. 2022. Experts in this cabinet estimated in January that Facebook would sell 1.3 million Oculus Quest in 2019, its wireless headset unveiled a year ago.