Meta to sell virtual clothes for real money as it preps avatars for the metaverse
Facebook owner Meta Platforms is launching a digital clothing store where users can purchase designer outfits for their avatars, chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said on Friday.
Speaking in a live video stream with Instagram’s head of fashion, the CEO added that virtual outfits designed by fashion brands Balenciaga, Prada and Thom Browne will be available for purchase.
According to a Meta spokesperson, they will be priced between $2.99 and $8.99, “much less” than the real outfits by the designers. For instance, Prada’s Matinee ostrich leather bag sells for $10,700.
Zuckerberg said he hoped to build the store out into an open marketplace where developers can create and sell a “wide array” of digital clothes.
Avatars have been developed as one way for Meta to link user identity across Facebook, Instagram and its other services, as it continues to strengthen the tie between the platforms and steers toward building an immersive “metaverse” of shared, interconnected digital worlds where users can gather.
The company redesigned its virtual reality avatars last year to be more expressive and three-dimensional, then made them available on Facebook, Instagram and Messenger starting in January.
Users of the virtual reality headsets create avatars to play video games, take exercise classes and participate in conference calls, although initially the digital outfits will be available only on Facebook, Instagram and Messenger, Meta outlined in a statement.
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