"The full realization of the metaverse is still five to 10 years away," Meta projected in a blog post announcing an early glimpse of what it might end up looking like. Apparently, it will be bacon. Specifically, a virtual version of quick-service restaurant chain Wendy's popular Baconator.
"Wendy’s is offering new opportunities for fans to interact with the company, its food and even each other," Meta posted, announcing a "virtual space" Wendy's has developed for its brands in a cartoon-like fantasy experience called "Horizon World."
The Wendy's hub, dubbed "Wendyverse," is completely organic and no money changed hands.
"Within the Buck BiscuitDome, fans will be able to shoot hoops with a virtual Baconator, get onto the court and cut off the net after hitting the winning shot. Visitors will also find hidden easter eggs, including free food, only available in Horizon Worlds," Meta announced.
The virtual space integrations, which were developed by Wendy's shops Spark Foundry and VMLY&R, as well as Meta's Creative Shop, are a precursor to what full-blown metaverse branding might be like, they said.
“For years we’ve been meeting our fans in unexpected ways and places with our unique approach to social media, gaming and engagement,” said Wendy's CMO Carl Loredo in a statement released in the post. “We’re excited to take this to the next level by launching the Wendyverse in Meta’s Horizon Worlds and bringing a totally new dimension of access to our fans. Truly a first of its kind, the Wendyverse bridges the best of today with tomorrow to show up for our fans across every world—with a Frosty and fries in hand.”
A Meta spokesperson emphasized that metaverse development opportunities on Horizon Worlds will remain organic for the foreseeable future.
"There’s a lot of things businesses can do today, all of which are free," he explained, adding that Meta is mostly focused on how it virtual spaces and metaverse experiences can be "useful to people and brands," and that the company is primarily focused on safety issues at this time.
That said, Meta is a company that derives 97% of its revenue from advertising, not organic brand experiences.
See a "sizzle" reel of Horizon World's "Wendyverse" below.