You’ve probably lately heard how the metaverse will bring forth a new era of digital connectedness, a boom in e-commerce, and a wide array of virtual reality experiences. Tech corporations are channeling a lot of their energy and money on it. For example, Microsoft recently purchased Activision Blizzard, an American video game holding company, for a whopping $68.7 billion, reflecting the company’s goal to strengthen its position in the interactive entertainment market.
Additionally, as we all know by now, Facebook’s parent company also changed its name to Meta, which was a crucial component of founder Mark Zuckerberg’s lofty plans to reinvent the social media site as “a metaverse company, building the future of social connection.”
While surely all of this sounds intriguing, and we know by now that the future is in immersive media, a lot of people are still left with the same question: What exactly is the metaverse and why is it considered a game-changing innovation?
In short (and scientific/coded terms), the metaverse is a network of integrated 3D virtual worlds These worlds can be accessed with the use of a virtual reality headset (which explains why tech companies are rushing to create their own headsets).
So how is the metaverse really navigated? Once you put on your VR headsets, you will be able to navigate the metaverse using your eye movements, voice commands, and controllers. Once the user is wearing their headset, they will feel immersed in the environment, which will stimulate the sensation of presence.
Many multiplayer virtual reality games already offer these components, making them the perfect example of what the metaverse actually is. Essentially, it is a fictional computer generated world that you can exist in without having to actually physically exist in.
However, this is not exclusive to games, certain cities are even being built in the metaverse prompting suiters to even imagine a life in a virtual world.
This is why the metaverse is a game-changing innovation: It undercuts the need to be physically elsewhere, making it extremely easy to essentially “teleport” to other virtual worlds and landscapes.
Imagine if your entire community was in the metaverse, with their own avatars, you may be able to have dinner with all your friends without even leaving the house. Musicians and performers are considering hosting concerts in the metaverse, and the sporting industry is potentially following suit.
In short, whether we like it or not, the metaverse is here to stay, and it is a virtual world that we may one day all have easy access to.
Fashion awards have even been held in the metaverse. Whatever you can imagine, the metaverse most likely can make it a reality (one day).
Photo via Duncan Rawlinson