Meta Metaverse Weekly: Zuckerberg Shows off Less Terrible Graphics; MTV VMAs Chase Metaverse Concert-goers

This week in the Meta metaverse has been dedicated largely to damage control from last week, when CEO Mark Zuckerberg posted an in-world “selfie” of himself in front of the Eiffel Tower and Barcelona’s Sagrada Familia Cathedral that was widely derided as “dead-eyed,” sporting graphics that “look like they came out of a computer game developed in 1997.”

That led to a lot more comments to the effect of, “Where has Meta really been spending the $10 billion per year listed on its quarterly earnings reports?” Those expenditures led to missing analysts’ expectations several times, taking a sizable hatchet to the stock price.


So, unsurprisingly, Zuckerberg quickly came up with a (somewhat) better picture of himself and a more detailed street scene that had better — but nowhere near modern video game — graphics.

In an Instagram post, Zuckerberg explained that “major updates to Horizon and avatar graphics [are] coming soon,” referring to Horizon Worlds, the company’s proto-metaverse, built-in virtual reality world designed as a start point for Meta’s Oculus VR headsets.

F8 Favors the Metaverse

Promising to share more details at an upcoming event, Zuckerberg added, “I know the photo I posted earlier this week was pretty basic — it was taken very quickly to celebrate a launch. The graphics in Horizon are capable of much more — even on headsets — and Horizon is improving very quickly.”

Meta also dropped a new commercial, featuring a multinational African bike racing team that eventually shifted from real reality to a virtual reality — Meta’s eventual metaverse — where they’ll be able to train together on stationary bikes and sleeker-than-current headsets.

He also promised those “major updates” at the company’s Connect show. Why is this relevant? Because the show used to be “Oculus Connect” — dedicated to the VR headset and Horizon Worlds.

That’s now a big enough deal that the company cancelled its main developer show, F8, “while we gear up on new initiatives that are all tailored towards the next chapter of the internet, and the next chapter of our company too: building the metaverse.”

MTV Adds Best Metaverse Performance to VMA Awards

MTV’s Video Music Awards haven’t been doing too well viewership-wise, but in-metaverse concerts on (non-blockchain) platforms like Roblox and Fortnite have been doing very well.

So, the VMAs now have a new category: Best Metaverse Performance.

The six nominees include Ariana Grande, whose Rift tour on Fortnite attracted a total of more than 27 million viewers, as well as Justin Bieber, K-Pop group BTS and three other acts.

Beijing Unveils Two-Year Metaverse Plan

China’s capital city has announced a two-year metaverse innovation and development plan that requires various districts to build out the tech infrastructure to support development, as well as actively promote the project with marketing and education, according to Coindesk.

It’s part of a newly-released Web3 innovation plan designed to help develop metaverse-related companies and industries. It also puts Beijing about nine months behind Shanghai, which made a similar announcement back in December.

That, however, was part of a broader five-year development plan that called for integrating metaverse planning into public services and offices, among other things, per a CNBC report.

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