A recent article in McKinsey tries to probe the realities and myths that surround Metaverse
Myth 1. Does no one know what the Metaverse is?
Myth 2. The Metaverse is a fad
Myth 3. The Metaverse is for gamers
Myth 4. The Metaverse is geared to Gen Z
Myth 5. You can’t make money in the Metaverse
Myth 6. The speed of technology will set the pace for adoption
Is Metaverse not an unmanifest form of web1 and web2? Metaverse possibilities remain with more computational power, faster communication bandwidth, and increased hardware capabilities, which we have now. With the innovation and adoption of the Internet during the 1980s, the possibilities of VR opened up. Unfortunately, the technology has not evolved and has with many limitations. Now the same is getting manifested as Metaverse!
Convergence of multiple technologies such as VR (Virtual reality), Augmented reality (AR), AI (Artificial Intelligence), MR (Mixed reality), 5G and newer technology elements define Metaverse possibilities now and future.
Among the various definitions of Metaverse, this definition is eye-catching. A Metaverse is a network of 3D virtual worlds focused on social connection. Is Metaverse all about 3D virtual world and social? No, it is not. Let us not specify the boundaries.
As some describe, it is not a hypothetical iteration of the Internet as a single, universal virtual world facilitated by using virtual and augmented reality headsets. This is factually correct but not complete.
Metaverse is immersive and has more real-world applications beyond virtual gaming, creating a virtual world and exchanging with real values.
Familiar with metaverse people gaming platforms like Roblox, Minecraft, and Animal Crossing as examples. (Roblox’s 50 million daily users are under the age of 18) The gaming industry is at the forefront of the Metaverse, and Metaverse users today are exaggerated as gamers. Those familiar with the Metaverse spend 1.5 more hours per week playing video games than those unfamiliar with the Metaverse.
McKinsey’s consumer research suggests that commercial value is already scattered across digital products and services for companies to capture. Consumers, on average, spend $219 annually on digital assets, of which more than 30 per cent is on metaverse-related assets such as in-game purchases, virtual enhancements and real estate, and nonfungible tokens NFTs (Ingame Purchase, Virtual Cosmetics, NFT and Virtual real estate)
In contrast, Metaverse can solve the more significant challenges of World Healthcare, Global Hunger, Education and Climate Change. It also has the power to divert attention from reality, defocusing and channelling our knowledge and energy away from reality. Metaverse is about making fundamentals strong that were not possible in previous versions of the technology innovation web1.0 and web2.0.
Quote from a recent report in science direct that published several gaps in the application of VR in higher education. For instance, learning theories were not often considered in VR (Virtual Reality) application development to assist and guide toward learning outcomes. Furthermore, the evaluation of educational VR applications has primarily focused on the usability of the VR apps instead of learning outcomes, and immersive VR has mostly been a part of experimental and development work rather than being applied regularly in actual teaching. Opportunity knocking at the door.
Metaverse can open up entirely new channels for delivering treatment, lowering costs, and significantly improving patient outcomes in healthcare. Three significant channels 1. Telemedicine 2. Blockchain and 3. Digital Twins are fueling the effective, innovative use of Metaverse in healthcare.
The positive environmental aspects of the Metaverse, Metaverse will lower the amount that people travel for business and fun, and in turn, this will decrease pollution. However, it has its downsides. According to Data Quest, analysts are worried the Metaverse could lead to an influx of greenhouse gas emissions. Virtual reality technology and data centres use AI and cloud services, which require a lot of energy. The search is for cleaner and greener technology.
There is a strong relationship between economic fundamentals, success of a economic model and wealth creation.
The recent value erosion in the crypto market is due to the lack of fundamentals. While the macro economic terms, economic models, and community-based approach to building values could be innovative, they tend to get biased and create multiple hypes and speculative environments without solid fundamentals, resulting in wealth erosion.
Economic value creation should have solid fundamentals. For the real world, wealth creation from an economic model should glue value creation with underlying asset creation, tangible or intangible.
This may sound like old-school thoughts for some, but it has a strong base and principle. The world should move beyond a couple of ugly monkeys and be immersed in limitless virtual games, spending $ on virtual real estate, ultimately waiting for speculation conditions for gain. Undoubtedly, Gen Z is NOW a real innovator and should not get defocused.
McKinsey reports, “Generation Z and millennials expect to spend close to five hours per day, but older generations also expect to spend several hours in the Metaverse daily. This expected shift is driven by a desire for greater convenience, connectivity, and entertainment. Along with recent fanfare and strong medium-term interest from consumers, we believe that the Metaverse is the future, not a fad.”
It appears the world is divided by two thoughts of immersive use cases. (You and Me)
Web3 has provided us with the platter that we only wished and imagined a decade earlier but could not fulfil in the previous versions because of technological limitations, processing speed, Hardware limitations, software evolution and cost-consciousness. The best of NOW is available, and let’s innovate the REAL in us.
Reference McKinsey, Science Direct, World Economic Forum