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HTC Partners with pixiv to Integrate VRoid’s Japanese Anime-Style Avatars into VIVERSE

Avatars are an essential element in people’s virtual lives in the metaverse. VIVERSE, the HTC metaverse platform, announced that it has partnered with pixiv Inc., which operates pixiv, a leading Japan creator platform. The alliance will bring fresh Japanese anime-style avatars to VIVERSE by integrating pixiv’s 3D character modeling software, VRoid Studio. This partnership will offer users more options to express themselves creatively and bring their imagination to life in the metaverse.

Operating by pixiv Inc., pixiv aims to “create a place where creation becomes more interesting.” pixiv is one of Japan’s most prominent social media platforms, offering a place for all kinds of creators to share their illustrations, manga, and novels and interact with each other. In response to the growing demands for virtual content, pixiv launched VRoid in 2018. With VRoid Studio, a 3D virtual character modeling software, users can customize their virtual characters’ hairstyles, faces, bodies, clothes, etc. More than 10,000 avatars are created through VRoid every day worldwide.

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“Avatars are an essential part of the metaverse. They represent a user’s persona and swiftly convey the idea of ‘who I am’ to others,” said Joseph Lin, President of VIVERSE. “The partnership with pixiv will rapidly increase the number of virtual characters on VIVERSE and meet the needs of users who prefer anime and manga styles. VIVERSE will continue to introduce more unique characters and accessories in the future; with a variety of virtual avatars from reality to imaginary, a metaverse like Star Trek will not be far behind.”

“We believe integrating VRoid Avatar with the VIVERSE system would be excellent news for VRoid users,” said Shingo Kunieda, President and CEO of pixiv. “90 percent of VRoid Studio users are from different countries outside Japan. We will continue working with VIVERSE to build a world where people from all over the world can enjoy communication through 3D Avatar.”

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pixiv co-founded the VRM Consortium with 13 Japanese companies. The organization aims to spread the platform-independent 3D avatar file format VRM and formulate a unified standard. HTC has also announced support for the VRM standard since the launch of VIVERSE. Currently, both VRM Consortium and HTC are principal members of the Metaverse Standards Forum, dedicated to achieving open metaverse interoperability.

The first task of the partnership between VIVERSE and pixiv will be connecting the data on their systems. VRoid users will be able to use their original Avatar models on the VIVERSE platform. As for the long-term mission, VIVERSE and pixiv will work together to provide users with more customized and flexible creation features and to optimize the avatar tools and accessories for VIVERSE. In addition to the existing Avatar functions, VIVERSE will also bring more services through partnerships to provide more customized services following the needs of corporations.

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