Many things happening around us, sometimes we simply do not notice, if the context of our life does not intersect with certain areas. But sometimes there comes a moment when it becomes impossible not to know about something because this is our day. Yes, the definition of the metaverse did not appear today, and for many, this area has long been an object of study and a focus of development. Today this topic is becoming relevant not only as a research topic but is already becoming fully applied.
We invited Sergey Doronichev, an Immersive technology manager in Silicon Valley, who has been implementing virtual and augmented reality solutions around the world, to discuss several important issues on this topic.
The article was written based on interviews and third-party sources and does not compensate in any way for the impressions and insights that you will receive by watching the interview with Sergey.
What is the metaverse
Firstly, it should be said that the metaverse is not a unique solution and concept of Facebook, the term has existed for more than a decade and about 30 years ago, science fiction writers have already spoken about it in their books, and films such as The Matrix and Ready Player One perfectly describe this concept.
But if we talk about our reality, then the metaverse is far from science fiction and is no longer something new. The concept of the metaverse is about how humans will interact with information in the near future. We are already crossing the line of interacting with the Internet from 2D to 3D, with the metaverse we will be inside the Internet.
💡 The metaverse (a portmanteau of "meta-" and "universe") is a hypothesized iteration of the Internet, supporting persistent online 3-D virtual environments through conventional personal computing, as well as virtual and augmented reality headsets. ©️Wikipedia
The metaverse in the Internet space will be the same world in which we live now, just the processes carried out through the Internet will become more and more, and each of them will be more interactive, more convenient and less real.
What's going on at the moment
The active development of the concept of the metaverse today is determined by several factors.
active development of technologies to ensure interaction with and within virtual reality
world events that pushed the abrupt transition of the global society to online and the development of tools that support more and more online processes
the natural development of the processes of everyday life in an effort to make it easier, more convenient, more native
The key technologies today are such trends as VR, AR, Cryptocurrencies, NFT. And if you think that the hype of technologies such as VR and AR has passed, then you are deeply mistaken, for example, Google Glass is more than a living project, it just changed its focus from working with customers to the business, and today more than 50,000 copies of Google Glass are used throughout the world. VR and AR technologies have found active use in business today, especially in industries such as construction and medicine. Spoiler: In an interview, Sergey will show and tell about several current devices. We also expect augmented reality glasses from Apple, and given that Apple is great at integrating technology into the daily life of consumers, it is likely that tomorrow augmented reality will become our daily routine.
Just 50 years ago:
💡 Morton Leonard Heilig (December 22, 1926 – May 14, 1997) was a pioneer in virtual reality (VR) technology and a filmmaker. He applied his cinematographer experience and with the help of his partner developed the Sensorama over several years from 1957, patenting it in 1962. It was big, bulky, and shaped like a 1980s era video arcade game. The Sensorama was quite impressive for 1960s technology. The game gave the player the experience of riding a motorcycle on the streets of Brooklyn. The player felt the wind on their face, the vibration of the motorcycle seat, a 3D view, and even smells of the city. Heilig wanted to create “cinema of the future.”  The Sensorama was doomed, however, from the high costs of the filmmaking. The problem was not that the apparatus addressed the wrong senses; the business community just couldn't figure out how to sell it. He was not able to find the amount of funds necessary to create new 3-D films “obtained with three 35 mm cameras mounted on the cameraman.” ©️Wikipedia
Today, people are already buying digital objects, and the digital economy is developing at a frantic pace, VR is actively used in the field of education, still mostly in business, but there are already startups in education that offer education for children and students using modern technologies. By the way, in 1961, the Philco Corporation developed the first Headsight virtual reality helmets for military purposes, and this was the first application of the technology in real life.
There is an active digitalization of the business. Large industrial companies create doubles of their assets. Data collection + artificial intelligence. True, they still see it in 2D, for example, they use a helmet from Microsoft.
There is already a demand for virtual clothing for use on social networks, and major fashion brands have been actively using digital models for several years.
Fb is investing $ 10 billion in the metaverse and has merged the AR / VR projects Oculus, Portal, and Spark AR into a common Facebook group, Reality Labs. It already employs 10,000 people.
Obviously, a single digital system awaits us in the metaverse, but also many unconnected platforms, it is still the Internet.
What entrepreneurs should pay attention to
Investors are already familiar with technological hypes and now one of them is happening again, but the context of technological progress is becoming more realistic, so there is interest, but also alertness;
There will be new business models and new ways of monetization, new economic spaces within the metaverse. New services, spaces, assets, currencies, paid experiences (example: theme parks);
Many ethical questions arise, the answers to which are not obvious. The internet will be decentralized. There should be no institutions that control your presence on the Internet, but whether society is ready for such freedom is an open question;
The new universe is actively developing and how it will depend on us. We are all here to make the world a better place, so think about it if you can make an important contribution to what our meta world will be like;
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Editor of the Go Global World, Head of Product Discovery at MVP lab