Meta targets one billion users in metaverse by 2030, Mark Zuckerberg says

Mark Zuckerberg has said that Meta is aiming to attract at least one billion users into the metaverse by 2030. The Meta co-founder and CEO made the comment in an interview with Jim Cramer on the CNBC’s Mad Money on Wednesday.

In the first quarter of 2022, the company recorded 3.64 billion monthly active users throughout its apps and platforms. Earlier in the fourth quarter of 2021, the social media giant invested $10 billion in its metaverse line.

“We hope to basically get to around a billion people in the metaverse doing hundreds of dollars of commerce, each buying digital goods, digital content, different things to express themselves,” Zuckerberg said.

“So, whether that’s clothing for their avatar or different digital goods for their virtual home or things to decorate their virtual conference room, utilities to be able to be more productive in virtual and augmented reality and across the metaverse overall.”

Optimistic about latest VR technology

A recent study by Gartner shows that at least one in four people will spend at least one hour per day in the metaverse by 2026, meaning that there will be around two billion people using the metaverse in the next four years.

Meta has been putting major investments in hardware, software, and experiences to help attract users to the metaverse. In 2014, the company acquired headset maker Oculus VR for $2 billion. While the shipment of its VR headsets failed to outperform that of PCs or smartphones, Zuckerberg said he was optimistic about the performance of the latest version of Meta VR headsets, Meta Quest 2, which starts at $299.

“Quest 2 has been a hit,” Zuckerberg said. “I’ve been really happy with how that’s gone. It has exceeded my expectations.

“But I still think it’s going to take a while for it to get to the scale of several hundreds of millions or even billions of people in the metaverse, just because things take some time to get there. So that’s the north star. I think we will get there. But, you know, the other services that we run are at a somewhat larger scale already today.”

Zuckerberg then explained that Meta would be working towards expanding the experiences in the metaverse beyond text, photos, and videos over the next decade.

The 38-year-old billionaire invited Cramer into the metaverse. He said metaverse encounters help create a sense of being next to each other despite being miles away on each side of the country.

In addition, the Facebook co-founder also suggested that metaverse meetings help make eye contact, which is harder to achieve on video calls. He explained that the use of spatial audio also allowed for a more realistic conversation.

The technology used also “adds up to making it deliver this realistic sense of presence” Zuckerberg explained.

“You know, our playbook over time has been build services, try to serve as many people as possible — you know, get our services to a billion, two billion, three billion people, and then we basically scale the monetization after that,” Zuckerberg said.

“And we’ve done that with Facebook and Instagram. WhatsApp is really going to be the next chapter, with business messaging and commerce being a big thing there.”