Cary Rosenzweig, chief executive and president of the Palo Alto, Calif.-based company, said in an interview the company has doubled its revenue in the past year in spite of the recession and the cooling off of the virtual world hype.IMVU now has more than 40 million registered users and six million unique visitors a month, according to com Score.There is one person, the Avatar, who has the ability to bend all four elements.It is the Avatar’s duty to keep balance within the four nations, thus keeping balance in the world."Who we are in real life does to some extent drive our choices in deciding how to represent ourselves online." In particular, Fong refers to the Big Five personality traits: openness, conscientiousness, extraversion, agreeableness and neuroticism.
“The idea of being in an environment that is building and practicing those skills so that you can take them into a real world scenario, I think that can be really helpful.”In the simulations--a series of three role plays--a male actor would control a virtual avatar’s movements and voice in real time, allowing for a responsive experience.
Virtual simulations “seem to be more immersive than face-to-face role plays,” said clinical psychologist Lorelei Simpson Rowe, the study’s lead author.
“The participant is not thinking any more about being in a room in a psychology study with other people around,” she is “focused on what she is seeing through the glasses and what she's hearing.”The study included 78 female students aged 14 to 18 from an all-girls urban high school.
“I think it’s important that potential partners know which companies in this space are going to be around tomorrow,” Rosenzweig said.
IMVU grew its revenue primarily by increasing the sale of virtual currency to its members, who use that currency to purchase virtual goods ranging from clothing for their avatars to furniture for their rooms.