Meta opened its Horizon Worlds social VR platform in December, rolling out its proto-metaverse project to Quest users in the US and Canada. During an all-hands company call this past week—where CEO Mark Zuckerberg dubbed Meta employees ‘metamates’—the company announced its Horizon platform has now exceeded 300,000 users.

Meta’s chief product officer Chris Cox made a statement during the call regarding Horizon World’s user growth, saying that the social VR platform’s userbase had ballooned by a factor of 10 since its closed beta, now accounting for 300,000 users. The news was broke by The Verge’s Alex Heath, who was first to reveal the contents of the call.

A Meta spokesperson confirmed that number, stating that it includes the base social platform Horizon Worlds and live event viewing app Horizon Venues, but not the work-focused app Horizon Workrooms.

It’s not exactly clear what the number signifies in terms of actual Horizon users; it could refer to unique visitors over the lifetime of the project since launch, or monthly active users. Still, the milestone undoubtedly highlights the sort of immediate reach Meta has as the Quest platform holder.

Meta’s deep pockets also ensured that everyone at the Super Bowl could see Horizon in action, visually telling the story of a Chuck E. Cheese-style animatronic dog who is cast away from his pals and then meets back up with them in VR, underlining the tech’s ability connect people and share unlikely experiences.

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300,000 is a big number any way you slice it for a VR app, although here’s some perspective. Rec Room—arguably Horizon World’s largest competitor—announced in early 2021 that it had broken one million monthly active users in VR, half of which used Quest 2.

Like Rec Room, 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. Prior to securing a $145 million funding round, valuing Rec Room at $3.5 billion, the kid-friendly platform announced in 2020 its was hosting over three million user-created levels. Meta clearly has some ground to cover.

Some of that catch-up strategy will likely entail opening Horizon up to the rest of the world, and not just Quest users in the US and Canada. It’s still not certain when that will happen.

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—what you might define as an interconnected, immersive experience that allows for persistent identity, items, avatar, etc.

While that day hasn’t come yet, with Meta’s (née Facebook’s) recent pivot to the metaverse, it may arrive sooner than you think. Shareholders are counting on it.

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Well before the first modern XR products hit the market, Scott recognized the potential of the technology and set out to understand and document its growth. He has been professionally reporting on the space for nearly a decade as Editor at Road to VR, authoring more than 4,000 articles on the topic. Scott brings that seasoned insight to his reporting from major industry events across the globe.
  • ViRGiN

    Compared to 6 years old SteamVR platform, which roughly gets on average 24000 people… Yeah, PCVR is dead.

    • guest

      Yeah, that aren’t halfassed victims of a mobile Procrustian bed! They should put everyone’s avatars in a jacuzzi or at least up to their waste in cranberries…

      • ViRGiN

        You sound like a VRChat user, and custom avatars are everything of your personality. I haven’t even used Horizon, yet it seems like the only social vr platform where you can find REAL people, not weebs, creeps, furries and everything in between. Just YouTube VRChat, 99% of videos uploaded at any point of time are about adult man in 5000 year old anime avatar; bonus points for male-to-female voice changer app.

        • Frozenbizkit

          Its all just weird and gross.. Seems like a pedos paradise for some.

          • ZarathustraDK

            Yet Horizons is the place that gets articles with people complaining about sexual harrassment… Yeah furries can be off-putting to some people, but at least they aren’t jerking it to anti-aliased lego-amputees.

          • ViRGiN

            Because it’s trendy to smear anything Meta, it will get you clicks. Websites that covers worldwide news, politics, aren’t going to dwelve into vrchat pedophilia.

        • Guest

          Why are you a hater of weebs, furries, and everything cute? Are you one of those gun freaks that just wants to shoot everything in VR, and eventually in real life if you get desensitized enough???

          • ViRGiN

            Which one of the above are you?

          • There is nothing cute about furries. The people are mentally damaged and probably jerk it to sesame street.

        • As an adult I have had the best luck meeting actual cool people I can converse with on Horizon. Light years ahead of the shitshow that is VRchat. At least as far as meeting real people and not kids being yelled at by their crack whore moms in the background.

    • Cless

      PCVR is dead, lol, this is going to age soooooo well, its almost funny.

      • ViRGiN

        So when is finally gonna be important? You know people still use zx spectrum today? It’s far from dead. You’re gonna age so well, when in 5 years the most played games are still going to be beat saber, rec room and pavlov.

        • Cless

          Again, I’m getting tired to repeating this to you every time you put out your terrible “PCVR IS DEAAAAAAD” argument. Its pretty similar to the situation that PC gaming was at the turn of the millennium. Eventually numbers will pick up, games will be made, and there will be a healthier player base, since unlike “other portable technologies”.
          Bottom line is, PC gaming is not going anywhere, and since that is not happening, neither is PCVR, which will keep growing, slower or faster, but will keep growing nonstop like it has until now.

          • ViRGiN

            EVENTUALLY. So it’s dead now. Period. You’ve got to be nuts and out of touch to claim it’s growing. You know what’s really growing? Sales of Nintendo 64 cartridges. When “inevitably” PCVR does become relevant, it will be claimed as RESSURECTED.

            I’m tired off “it’s not dead cause i use it”. Not a single one of you silly fanboys has been capable to provide any evidence of it growing, other than steam number, when in reality games aren’t getting any more real population. Yesterday 45% of connected pcvr users was spending time in rec room. Pcvr my ass.

          • Cless

            EVENTUALLY. So it’s dead now. Period. You’ve got to be nuts and out of touch to claim it’s growing.

            Sounds like it might be news to you but… if a platform has more users than yesterday, yes, it is growing.
            Even if all of them are playing a port from a mobile phone of fruit ninja, if there is more of them, it its growing, you like it or not.

            I didn’t said the market is healthy and ripe with amazing AAA games coming out every other week, I said its not dead and that its user base is growing.
            Why is that more relevant than what people are playing you ask? Well let me tell you, because any developer, before starting a game will ask “How many people will be able to play the game?” which will directly take them to look the number of people that own a headset. They give a shit if those people are playing mother fucking pong VR.

            So, because its growing, and its at the highest its ever been and keeps growing, its not dead. Which in turn means that eventually will make it so building bigger better games (which is already happening behind closed doors btw) will be less of a risk, which in turn will bring more investment and more games. So yeah, the word of the day is EVENTUALLY.

            All of this is nothing new, literally happened with PC gaming as a whole back in the 2000s ffs, its not rocket science.

            Now part of the bulk is being syphoned by Facebook for the only reason that they have the best price/spec headset out there, and because they do help economically smaller devs if they publish as exclusive. All of that, will help get people into VR, with many of those eventually upgrading to PCVR. I get that you don’t like that, but that’s the truth.

            Not a single one of you silly fanboys has been capable to provide any evidence of it growing, other than steam number

            Sounds a hell of a lot like
            “OH NO! Nobody that disagrees with me (which of course makes them lowly fanboys, UNLIKE ME) has been able to prove how PCVR is growing EVER!!
            …Well, that is if we ignore the data coming from the bigger PC gaming store, which has a big chunk of the people that use VR! So, if we go ahead and completely ignore any of their data that is being tracked, then I’m completely right!!! Oh, why I don’t like those numbers? I just don’t like data that goes against my arguments when its convenient for me”

            Why don’t you for a change prove to everyone around here that PCVR is dead by using data? Please show me how on average, there is less people playing PCVR this year, compared to years before. Which by the way, wouldn’t be a sign of it being dead, but I would accept it as a sign of it dying. And remember, I don’t give a shit if they are playing fucking pong VR, the important part is that there is more people using VR on PC on average.

          • ViRGiN

            What’s the point of all this bullshit? One more user than a month before is clear growth to you. There is no changing your mind and I’m not even going to attempt to. Between August and September the monthly users money was actually lower than before. You still see it as growth. There are more Nintendo 64 sales than a month before. Clearly Nintendo 64 is far from dead, despite not being made for decades.

            Big games happening behind closed doors.. and you know that as a what, industry insider? Well guess what, i can claim it’s all been cancelled after disappointment in Hitman 3, another title people had high hopes for. Nobody is developing pcvr games with pc quality, and clearly people don’t mind as year by year rec room is the hot cake.

            Maybe instead of getting tired of my posts, skip them?

          • Cless

            What’s the point of all this bullshit? One more user than a month before is clear growth to you.

            I mean, not “to me” it would literally be growth, end of question. A meager and pathetic grow if you ask me, but growth none the less. To be sincere if it were that low I would just say it is stagnant, its not losing people, but it isn’t gaining either. That at this stage would be a bad sign.
            You keep using the N64 example… but that is a very bad example. Sure it would technically be growth, but if we look far back, do we see a time where there was exponentially more people playing them? You bet your ass we do, after that is there a clear stagnation in the numbers going up when it eventually starts to DECLINE until almost reach 0? Yes there fucking is.
            Is comparing the n64 currently to an industry growing on a yearly average dumb? Yes, yes it is.

            Big games happening behind closed doors.. and you know that as a what, industry insider?

            Basically, yeah.
            Nobody is developing PCVR games with PC quality because there aren’t numbers for that kind of stuff yet. We are on AA territory at the moment, which is where a lot of very interesting stuff can happen. There will be plenty of duds on the way, just like aaaaany other platform.

            Maybe instead of getting tired of my posts, skip them?

            Nah, I read all of your stuff, you have your good points from time to time, or add interesting different points of view to some conversations (Unlike other users that I personally think are batshit insane that I won’t mention here.).
            And well, when you are right I will upvote you and agree with you in a comment too, you know that.

            And maybe not so often here since I’m usually better informed than other fields (like politics or science), but when other people show me solid data, I don’t mind saying “Dude, I was wrong, I changed my mind” at all.

  • It seems to me a random number shared so that to show people that Horizon is full of people, and they are missing something cool. Actually, last time I was there, it was quite empty

    • namekuseijin

      Tbh, so is Rec Room, aside from brats in the hot rooms.

  • FrankB

    Metas avatar system is fucking awful, whatever you do you end up with an avatar that looks nothing like you but totally looks as creepy as the real life Zuckerberg. This and a lack of smooth locomotion (at least in venues, not tried horizons) puts me right off using it.

    • namekuseijin

      avatar is one of the most expressive and animated out there, just not retarded furries and that bothers a niche group

      • Cless

        Yeah, from “build your own” kind they are the best, by a long mile to be fair, but they don’t really have any competition in that regard.
        And trust me, I’ve seen some of those good VR furry characters, and the technical quality they’ve been done at would leave many maaaaaaany game protagonists in the dust. They don’t mind throwing like 2 or 3k to a professional game 3D artist so they get the maximum quality they can afford.

        (this is completely regardless of us liking their style / design, I’m talking purely from a technical standpoint)

        • namekuseijin

          Maximum quality for awful performance.

          • Cless

            Fair enough lol
            There is a bizillion of trash “pretty looking” models. But anyone can throw 1000 loops to make everything look highpoly and smooth…
            But I wasn’t talking about those though. Those are are awful avatars from artists that are good artists, but bad game developers, which there is a bunch of them. The good expensive ones tend to be done by pros that know the limits and know optimization techniques.

  • namekuseijin

    where are all 10 million Quest2 owners?

    this is Meta’s metaverse for now, where’s everyone?

    I have a feeling those speculated numbers are largely off. About 200k users met Ashley by the end of chapter 1 in RE4, the trophy stats tell me. Alright, this is one the premier games on Quest at 40 bucks. Horizon Worlds is free.

    this is a disgrace…

  • Ad

    This is incredibly embarrassing. And the title should note it includes venues. So pathetic after they burned all that cash.

  • I’ve only used horizon once, but I had a great time. Went to a comedy club where the people were awful, then played rounds upon rounds of games with strangers that ended up being super chill. For how early it is in development I thought it was a good time and fun way to meet random people. I’m no meta fan but I thought it was a good enjoyable base to build upon.

  • 300,000 users in 3 months! This is really a great news!