Meta's plan to take up to 47.5% on each transaction from virtual items in its metaverse-related hub Horizon Worlds lays bare the company's hypocrisy, Fred Sainz, Senior Director, Corporate Communications at Apple told MarketWatch.

Meta's cut includes a hardware platform fee of 30% via its Meta Quest Store, as well as a 17.5% cut on Horizon Worlds. However, Meta's vice president of Horizon Vivek Sharma is convinced: the announced rate is a "pretty competitive" one in the market. In a commentary to The Verge, Sharma said:

We think it’s a pretty competitive rate in the market. We believe in the other platforms being able to have their share.

It's worth noting that Meta's rate is even higher than the one Apple charges (30%) from in-app purchases in the App Store. Sainz says that there's nothing new in the case of Facebook's parent company as it has always used "small businesses and creators as a scapegoat at every turn." He added:

Now — Meta seeks to charge those same creators significantly more than any other platform. [Meta’s] announcement lays bare Meta’s hypocrisy. It goes to show that while they seek to use Apple’s platform for free, they happily take from the creators and small businesses that use their own.

Despite Meta's efforts to lower the cut on the upcoming web version of Horizon Worlds, the "pretty competitive rate" is still enormously high in comparison with other similar products like Second Life, a multimedia platform where people can create an avatar for themselves and live in a virtual world.

Except for premium subscriptions and payments for use of virtual land, Second Life charges from 3.5% to 7.5% for moving money into and out of the ecosystem, Brad Oberwager, executive chairman of Second Life creator Linden Lab, told PC Gamer.

I can't imagine that Meta's nearly 50% take will be that motivating to creators.

To The Moon earlier reported that monetization in Horizon Worlds is available to people adult people in the US and Canada. It remains unclear if the company plans to lower that threshold in the future.

  • Meta first announced Horizon Worlds (formerly Facebook Horizon) in December 2021.
  • The service is only available in the US and Canada so far to those who have an Oculus Rift S or Oculus Quest 2 virtual reality headset.

Read also: Meta seeks developers for legless metaverse