Facebook announced that it is opening up Horizon Worlds. Its virtual reality world of avatars will be available to anyone 18 and older in the U.S. and Canada.

In Horizon Worlds, users of Facebook’s Oculus virtual reality headsets can create a legless avatar to wander in the animated virtual world. They can also play games and interact with other users’ avatars. Mark Zuckerberg, the co-founder and CEO of Meta Platforms said:

“Our hope is that within the next decade, the metaverse will reach a billion people, host hundreds of billions of dollars of digital commerce, and support jobs for millions of creators and developers.”

Facebook acquired Oculus for $2 billion in 2014. It has since struggled to get market traction beyond a niche audience. But the company has made building technologies, products and services for the metaverse a central focus.

Also in October, Facebook said it will spend about $10 billion over the next year developing technologies to build the metaverse.

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Special Projects Editor