If you have been on the internet in any form in the past few months – watched an advertisement, been on social media, or even read the news, you must have heard the term – “metaverse”. It has recently become one of the most popular buzzwords in the internet world, with companies investing millions of dollars in its development. So, what is this metaverse and why is everyone talking about it? Read on, and you’ll get it.
So, what is metaverse?
In very simple terms, the metaverse is the 3D virtual embodiment of the internet – a social platform that intertwines technologies like virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) to create a world where people can meet virtually in customized avatar forms. It’s a lot like video chatting, but people will feel more “present” and close to each other. It will also be synchronous, which will make it feel more real than the current form of feed-based social media platforms where we simply chat from a distance without being able to truly experience each other.
According to technologists, the metaverse is a persistent, shared, 3D virtual environment where people can congregate for a wide array of activities ranging from gaming to business operations. Even though the concept has existed for a while and quite a few games like “Roblox” or “Fortnite” have been incorporating the virtual reality idea in their games, the emerging idea of the real-life metaverse is different from these. As Meta (formerly Facebook) founder Mark Zuckerberg describes it – “an embodied internet that you’re inside of rather than just looking at.”
The interesting part about the metaverse is that the metaverse digital environment participants are still in their early years as compared to other Web 3.0 and Web 2.0 segments, but if present growth figures continue, this burgeoning sector has the capacity to turn mainstream in the years ahead. Web 3.0 Metaverse virtual worlds right now have approximately 50,000 all-time users (active wallets as route), which is about 10 times more than what it was at the start of 2020, according to a review conducted by Grayscale. The business opportunity for making the Metaverse a reality might be valued at over $1 trillion in annual sales, which will present serious competition before Web 2.0 companies which have a market value of over $15 trillion now.
Awesome things you can do in the metaverse
According to Zuckerberg, “The defining quality of the metaverse is presence, which is this feeling that you’re really there with another person or in another place”. You have the freedom to be a completely different person here by using your virtual avatar and doing everything that you cannot do in the real world. Here are just a few examples of the fantastic things you’ll be able to do in the metaverse-
- A broad range of possible activities from the comfort of your house:
In a pandemic-ridden world, you can’t really go out of your room for most fun activities. However, in the virtual world of the metaverse, you don’t have such restrictions. You can hang out with your friends, go shopping, go to concerts, and even go on dates – all from the comfort of your own house, mostly without having to move a muscle.
- You can be anyone:
You can live a life that you’ve always dreamt of, but couldn’t live because of various limitations – this can be financial, physical, or even natural. Think of the metaverse as a parallel universe where you make up all the rules. For instance, you can live the luxurious life of a celebrity even if it’s not who you are in your own life, you can be a fast and flexible hero even if you are physically challenged in real life, as in the movie “Avatar”. In fact, these virtual activities even include things that involve violating the laws of nature, such as flying like Superman or walking on the ceiling, etc, like in the dream state in “Inception” or the mirror dimension in “Dr. Strange”.
Just like in real life, you buy a jacket and wear it to a game, in the metaverse, you can create your avatar wearing a certain jacket and transfer that avatar from one platform to another as easily as copying your profile picture. The metaverse would not be owned or governed by a single firm, but many different actors will be operating it in a decentralized manner. Not surprisingly, brands are already rushing into metaverse to open their own stores for clothing, accessories, and such, and marketers are already setting foot here to target gen Z for metaverse marketing.
- Making money:
One of the most amazing things about the metaverse is its interoperability and money-making opportunities in all those operations. Metaverse translates to a new form of the digital economy where the users can create, buy, and sell goods, often transferable from one platform to the other. On the platforms of games like Roblox, a participant can invent their own activity, and sell it on its marketplace. You can also invest in metaverse lands in the form of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) just like in the real estate market. You can even buy and trade stocks from various companies like Meta, Microsoft, Roblox, Boeing, etc., offering metaverse components.
Owing to all its amazing features, you can see why everyone is excited about the arrival of this new internet. However, we must admit that metaverse, in its most promised format, doesn’t yet exist. Even so, not only have many games started incorporating virtual environments, but many companies like Boeing, Microsoft, and more are also using it to expand their productions and tweak their already existing applications. Zuckerberg predicts the full-fledged existence of the metaverse within the next five years, and knowing Facebook (especially since their brand transformation), it may not even take that long for his words to come true. In fact, in its primitive form, the metaverse is already so popular that experts predict it may even take over our known reality completely and everything will be determined by our presence in the virtual world. So we would recommend you get into the business as early as now to experience all the advantages of this new world.
Source: Welcome to the Metaverse