Meta Digest

The team behind Horizon World on ‘quality lockdown’ as employees don’t use it

Horizon Worlds team placed on 'quality lockdown,' Meta employees barely use the platform

Image source: Mixed News

When Mark Zuckerberg first shared a look at the virtual reality metaverse, Horizon Worlds, the internet didn’t hold back.

Most of the ridicule focused on the Horizon World graphics, prompting him to apologize.

Meta’s CEO said Horizon was “capable of doing a lot more” and “getting better quickly.”

However, it wasn’t the only one, because Meta employees adapting the platform don’t find it highly valued.

The Horizon Worlds team

The Verge managed to get an internal company memo, and they claim that Meta’s Horizon Worlds team has been scolded by department leaders.

According to the note, the team rarely uses the platform despite orders to use it at work and at home.

Other reminders mentioned that the team had been ordered to remain on “quality lock” for the rest of the year to continue experiencing issues with the appearance and function of the platform.

On September 15, Vishal Shah, VP of Meta’s Metaverse, wrote to employees saying:

“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?”

Horizon Worlds leadership

Two weeks after Shah’s statement, the management of Horizon Worlds realized that the team member’s engagement with the platform was still unsatisfactory.

In a note written on Sept. 30, Shah wrote that a plan was being developed that he held managers accountable for enforcing mandatory employee Horizon sessions.

“Everyone in this organization should make it their mission to fall in love with Horizon Worlds. You can’t do that without using it,” said Shah.

“Get in there. Organize times to do it with your colleagues or friends, in both internal builds but also the public build so you can interact with our community.”

Shah admitted that the Horizon World onboarding experience is “confusing and frustrating for users.”

She said that “the aggregate weight of papercuts, stability issues, and bugs is making it too hard for our community to experience the magic of Horizon.”

As a result, the Horizon Worlds team was ordered on September 15th to remain on “quality lockdown.”

The lockdown is to make sure the team addresses quality gaps and performance issues on the platform before opening it to more users.

A Meta spokesperson also said they are making quality improvements based on feedback from a community of creators.

“This is a multiyear journey, and we’re going to keep making what we build better,” said the spokesperson.

The Horizon World division

The situation of the platform is  notable because Zuckerberg poured a tremendous amount of money into the division, which he framed as Meta’s future.

In July, the metaverse division posted a significant loss of $2.8 billion for the second quarter, bringing full-year losses for the group to $5.77 billion.

Last year, the division lost $10.2 billion.

During the second quarter earnings call, Zuckerberg defended the shareholders of Facebook Reality Labs (FRL), the metaverse division.

“This is obviously a very expensive undertaking over the next several years,” he admitted.

“But as the metaverse becomes more important in every part of how we live… I’m confident that we’re going to be glad we played an important role in building this.”

Meta and Web3

Ever since the company changed its name last fall, Meta has been striving to dominate the Metaverse.

While Zuckerberg has enjoyed a massive spending spree in the metaverse, the results remain to be seen.

Meanwhile, Web3 leaders were skeptical of the company’s Metaverse campaign.

Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin said in late July that the metaverse was coming.

However, he didn’t believe that the companies’ attempts to create the metaverse were going nowhere.

“It’s far too early to know what people actually want,” he said.

“So anything Facebook creates now will misfire.”


Zuckerberg’s Metaverse app on ‘quality lockdown’ as even employees won’t use it: report

Opinions expressed by Meta Digest contributors are their own.