What is the Metaverse?
Facebook is planning to invest heavily into the Metaverse by hiring 10,000 specialized engineers in the next five years, and transform the company from a social media company to a Metaverse company. But what exactly is the metaverse?
The Metaverse is a network that combines online gaming, social media, virtual reality, augmented reality, and crypto currencies to enable users to interact and communicate in the virtual world via a VR headset.
It's a real time living experience which never pauses or ends like a video game would. One of the main characteristics is the unprecedented interoperability. But what does that mean?
Imagine that trip to go out with your friends that just keeps getting cancelled, well, now you can do that from the comfort of your own home. The metaverse is a full social system and economy across the real and virtual world. The avatars experiences, content and goods can move seamlessly.
What's the hype behind the Metaverse?
The gaming industry has shifted from the developer-earning model to the play-to-earn model, resulting in income generated for gamers. The Metaverse is believed to increase gaming potentials.
Metaverse is also powered by blockchain technology where users can purchase virtual real estates and other forms of digital assets using crypto currencies. Users need NFTs to purchase on these networks to send and receive rewards.
Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) are virtual tokens traded on the blockchain for digital scarcity, security, and authenticity. They are unique, indivisible, and non-interchangeable - allowing true digital ownership of in-game digital assets.
Think about the idea of how it would be possible to buy a gun skin or car design from one game, but then use it in all the games you play.
Gaming platform, The Sandbox, has shifted from traditional gaming to cryptocurrency gaming. The Sandbox Gamer Maker console enables users to produce games from scratch, play other people's games, and purchase digital assets.
"The Sandbox is a virtual world where players can play, build, own, and monetize their virtual experiences. We empower artists, creators, and players to build the platform they always envisioned, providing the means to unleash your creativity."
Metaverse zealots see it as the next revolution of the Internet development. At the moment, web users interact with each other through social media platforms or message applications. The concept of a metaverse creates a new form of online space that broadens people's interaction multi-dimensionally.
The global COVID outbreak situation increased the need for people to work remotely and enhance online interactions. The concept of the metaverse sparked interest from investors that believes metaverse will be part of the next big thing.
Microsoft is looking to transform the way businesses and operations happen altogether by creating an entire digital twin of the real world that we interact with through mixed reality. This is already happening today everything modeled in the metaverse mirrors the status of its physical twin including the interactions and relations between everything else.
We can now track and analyze data from connected environments to identify patterns, trends, and anomalies. We can now simulate any possibility, evaluate outcomes, determine the impact of any change or condition. We can now harness AI to perceive the physical world, to improve and automate tasks to give superpowers to your frontline workers.
Facebook launched Horizon Workrooms, a new way for office workers to connect using virtual reality and an Oculus headset. Facebook is planning on transforming the social media company to a metaverse company in the next five years.
The term metaverse has been popular in Silicon Valley. Microsoft talked about the concept of merging digital and physical world. Popular childen's game Robolox (RBLX.N) labels itself a metaverse company,
while Epic Games' Fortunite also describe itself as part of the metaverse. Musicians can also host virtual concerts on these platforms, where celebrities like Ariana Grande performed virtually in Fortunite back in September.
Fashion companies are also trying out virtual clothing that people's avatar can wear in a metaverse environment.
Facebook's Ambition to Conquer the Metaverse
Facebook has been at the forefront of VR and AR, investing billions of dollars into companies such as Oculus VR headsets, AR sunglasses, and wearable technologies.
Facebook believes that the metaverse has potential to unlock possibilities to access new social and economic opportunities. However, Facebook does not believe this will happen over night, that the process of building the true metaverse will take another 10-15 years.
Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, says
"I think of the Metaverse as the next generation of the Internet"
Instead of looking at flat panel 2D screen, it is essentially 3D Internet of the future.
What can we do in the Metaverse?
The possibilities are endless in the Metaverse. You can imagine being able to do everything you do in the physical world and extend that in the Metaverse. You can learn, work, play, and even earn money. In the future, business activities such as training, meetings, will be catered via the Metaverse.