The flagship metaverse product of Meta (formerly Facebook) is reportedly inundated with several quality issues and even those building the virtual reality (VR) social network at the company are barely using it. According to a report in The Verge citing internal memos, Meta’s VR social network called ‘Horizon Worlds’ holds little promise in its current avatar.
Vishal Shah, Meta’s VP of Metaverse, apparently told the employees that the metaverse team would remain in a “quality lockdown" for the rest of the year to “ensure that we fix our quality gaps and performance issues before we open up Horizon to more users". “Simply put, for an experience to become delightful and retentive, it must first be usable and well crafted," he wrote.
In August, Meta Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg was forced to post new screenshots on Facebook and Instagram, showing off a more life-like version of himself, after he faced memes on his poorly-designed metaverse avatar. In the same month, Vivek Sharma, the Indian-origin VP of Meta’s Horizon social media virtual reality (VR) platform, departed, at a time when Zuckerberg doubles down on his $10 billion metaverse dream.
Sharma’s team now reports to Shah. Shah wrote in an internal memo that “currently feedback from our creators, users, playtesters, and many of us on the team is that the aggregate weight of papercuts, stability issues, and bugs is making it too hard for our community to experience the magic of Horizon".
Horizon Worlds is a social VR experience where you can discover new places with friends, build unique worlds of your own, and form teams to compete in action-packed games. The Horizon Worlds social metaverse platform is currently available only on the company’s Quest VR headsets.
Share further wrote that for “many of us, we don’t spend that much time in Horizon and our dogfooding dashboards show this pretty clearly" “Why is that? Why don’t we love the product we’ve built so much that we use it all the time? The simple truth is, if we don’t love it, how can we expect our users to love it?" he added.
Meta was making a plan to “hold managers accountable" for having their teams use Horizon at least once a week. “Everyone in this organisation should make it their mission to fall in love with Horizon Worlds," read another memo. A Meta spokesperson said the company is “confident that the metaverse is the future of computing and that it should be built around people".
Zuckerberg said recently that major updates to Horizon and avatar graphics are coming soon.