According to the Merriam-Webster international dictionary, the meta verse has no meaning – the word does not exist. Despite its catchy nomenclature, “The Metaverse” refers to a complex and highly interactive virtual world that offers one the ability to interact with people and places in real time. The metaverse is a persistent, shared 3D virtual space linked into a perceived virtual universe. Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg’s announcement to invest $10 billion dollars and diversify his portfolio into virtual experiences via Meta platforms caused a major quake in the tech and social media worlds with many theories and conspiracies accompanied by The Metaverse as a whole.
Virtual reality (VR) technology presents a tremendous opportunity for businesses to collaborate, communicate, and engage with employees and customers. For many years, the best business collaboration solutions have been limited to text and video-based collaboration tools such as Jira, Slack, Webex, Teams, and Zoom. While these tools are extremely helpful, they have their limitations. Text-based business collaboration applications are great for messaging and sharing files, but lack more interactive elements. Video collaboration apps improve communication between participants, but fail to fully engage the audience.
In the last few years, virtual reality technology has advanced and has become a viable business solution to improve employee performance, collaborate with coworkers, and improve workflows. It is now possible to use digital solutions to collaborate and communicate with others in a more immersive environment. In this article, we explore the various ways companies are using virtual reality technology to transform their business collaboration.
Before now, there have been numerous attempts to create interactive communication and entertainment with the use of various technologies to trick our senses. The likes of interactive video games, virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) have all done a good job of providing a certain level of interactive communication and entertainment. However, The Metaverse has taken this technological advancement much further towards a direct and more futuristic objective. With the metaverse, immersive technology tales a full turn from playing video games to hosting actual events with multiple participants on a virtual space.
How Does the Metaverse Work?
This technologically advanced world is mostly powered by blockchain systems and technology, giving users the ability to trade, own, and even build majorly decentralized digital assets. Virtual items, including buildings, land, properties, and even personalized avatars, can be traded with ease on the Metaverse platform, using mostly cryptocurrency as a means for exchange. With Metaverse, one can explore a list of virtual locations and environments, attend a host of virtual events, make new friendships, and socialize with friends and family.
The Metaverse in the Corporate World
The metaverse is sure to grow rapidly as it will be easily accepted by companies and businesses looking to leverage its list of amazing benefits. Big players in the tech industry, including Apple, Google, Microsoft, and Facebook, have all made strong moves to embrace the metaverse ahead of their competitors. With its ability to shape our culture, society, and even our politics, the metaverse will give way to innovative social networks, advanced gadgets, and new consumer behavior and patterns. Based on forecasts from PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), the metaverse, as well as VR and AR technologies, are set to rise to a value of $1.5 trillion by 2030, as opposed to the $46.5 billion predicted in 2019.
E-commerce and the automotive industries stand to gain a lot, seeing that the metaverse allows for the creation of environments that e-commerce and automotive industries need. With this environment, users can easily shop for or test drive cars or products. One can also try on new clothing from literally anywhere in the world.
Gaming companies have also begun to leverage this virtual world of the Metaverse. Top players in the gaming industry are already giving us ideas of what to expect. For example, the leading game company, “Fortnite,” already hosted a virtual concert with Travis Scott with over 12 million people in attendance. Roblox, on the other hand, teamed up with Gucci to create a virtual garden, selling virtual Gucci bags at a higher price compared to the tangible and actual versions.
BENEFITS AND OPPORTUNITIES FOR BUSINESSES AND COMPANIES
Product Placement & Advertising: As people spend more time in the metaverse, there is a huge opportunity for advertising, billboards as well as product placement. By investing and integrating your business into the metaverse, you’re opening your business to a whole new world of marketing and advertising. The metaverse will provide customers with the ability to instantly locate and interact with your products and services in the virtual world.
Sponsorship of Events and Concerts: We’ve already seen this recently as Fortnite held a virtual concert that garnered millions of viewers and attendees. As more and more concerts are hosted in the metaverse, companies will have a host of opportunities for potentially profitable sponsorships. Your business will gain more exposure as it will be opened to numerous sponsorships and deals which will have a huge impact on your business.
Digital Only Products: Businesses and companies will have the opportunity to develop and sell digital products in this virtual world. So, pretty much anything people have in the real world will be something they want to buy in the virtual world as well. From cars to homes, and anything you can imagine, as well as things we can’t even imagine, customers will be looking to purchase these items in the virtual world. This will ultimately lead to an increase in sales, both virtually and in the real world as well.
Remote working: When we talk about the impact and opportunities for businesses, remote work is a big thing, as the metaverse provides an easier and more convenient way for your employees to work remotely. Since 2020, remote work has become a big deal in companies and businesses as it has been proven to improve productivity. With the metaverse, you can create whole working spaces, meetings, simulations, and training programs, providing a means for workers to collaborate online in virtual reality. In the future, we might have conferences, events, and trade shows in the virtual world as well, all done with your avatar while sitting at home.
In summary, the Metaverse is the future of technological and social interactions. This Virtual World concept has captured the hearts of many individuals especially in Nigeria where the minds of young tech enthusiasts and companies are in constant search of ways to capitalize on this new virtual development. The introduction of The Metaverse Virtual World poses a lot of great benefits for the corporate world as well as those who are prepared and willing to jump on this new world experience.