The metaverse is real. And it’s not new. Components of the metaverse experience have been around for a long while.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Economic Times – ET Edge Insights, its management, or its members

Metaverse-tech

The metaverse is real. And it’s not new. Components of the metaverse experience have been around for a long while.

Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere – Albert Einstein

For decades, human imagination has dared to think the unthinkable. Dreamers like Jules Verne, Steven Spielberg, Walt Disney, etc., have inspired the modern every-day life. So, whoever thinks the Metaverse is not real, I would ask them to rewind to the times, when not long ago the Matrix was just an imaginative entertainer. Now with AR, we’re living the Matrix life every day.

The Metaverse is real, and it’s not new. Components of the Metaverse experience have been around for a long while. The 3D gaming industry has been around – MMORPG (Massive Multi-player Online Role-Playing Games) have had cult following for years now. These games embody almost all critical aspects of what is being defined as the modern day Metaverse – 3D immersive persistent worlds, Avatar identities, thriving communities, real time interactive experiences.

So, what is all the fuss and excitement about? While gaming has been around for long and has quickly grown by recruiting newer audiences, it’s not seen as the mainstream. It’s still an escape to break away from your everyday. Gamers spend a lot of time with their games, they engage socially, they create profiles and alter-lives, but it still is just a game. The newfound excitement for the gaming style of living stems from the fact that large technology companies like Meta (no, Meta is not the metaverse), Microsoft, Nvidia and so many more are driving the shift to a gaming-style everyday life.

Why is Democratization of the Metaverse experience important? The Metaverse is your digital (and physical) life in immersive, seamless worlds. For it to become “everyday life”, it needs to be adopted the way social media is today. For that to happen, people need to not just enter worlds and consume content, they need to be able to co-create experience in real times. Platforms like Meta, Roblox, Sandbox & Decentral are taking massive steps in that direction. With tools that help users design and launch their own experiences, they are putting the reigns in the hands of the world.

Are we there, yet? There are of course, massive steps being taken, not just to innovate the front end of the user experience, but also to strengthen the core technologies and infrastructure that will enable the Metaverse – The server infrastructure, 5G and system hardware technology. Yes, there are early challenges of connectivity, sketchy experiences & breakdown but these are all undergoing transformation at a rapid pace.

What is the biggest hurdle in the Metaverse becoming mainstream? Purely from the user’s experience (and therefore the corresponding technology), cross platform Interoperability is a challenge for large scape adoption of the Metaverse. Interoperability refers to the ability of different platforms in the metaverse to talk to each other and facilitate exchange of identity and economy across platforms. For users to create new identities on all platforms and to create their economies separately will discourage them to make it their everyday life, Interoperability is not just a technical challenge; it is also a corporate challenge.

The politics of large walled gardens lowering their walls and working together on solutions, that will help users move around the metaverse seamlessly will pose a huge challenge.

For all naysayers, I would like to say this – Imagination and human ingenuity have a way of finding ways to overcome challenges. The Metaverse is here!

 

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Economic Times – ET Edge Insights, its management, or its members