The metaverse is undoubtedly a trend that is here to stay. It has the potential to turn our lives upside down, changing how we connect, interact, work, etc. However, many people still need to become more familiar with the subject. In the USA in 2022, only 14% of surveyed adults claimed to be familiar with the metaverse. 31% have heard the term but have yet to learn what it is, and another 31% have never heard of it.
Nonetheless, this 3D virtual shared space is already permeating our lives, even when we are not aware of it. This metaverse podcast episode of Unscripted Tech dives right in!
Can we define the metaverse?
It’s easier to think about the metaverse by referring to the history of the Internet. Veronika Futaoka, Product Director at Globant, introduces the concept with a brief description of the evolution of the web, from the early stages when connecting to the Internet was almost a ritual to the birth of social networks and now, the emergence of IoT, e-commerce, and more recently web 3.0.
Veronika mentions that the metaverse results from all those technological advances: a platform connecting spaces, people, and places. It’s the convergence between the physical and digital worlds where we will begin to have virtual identities.
Also, the metaverse has four key characteristics: persistent, social, user-generated, and interoperable. In the words of Fabien Rossini, Co-leader of the Metaverse Studio at Globant:
“The first feature is persistent, meaning that even while you’re away, things are happening and are changing the world. It’s mainly social because it enables people to interact with each other. It can be user-generated, as people can create and share content, and interoperable, meaning that you can move content and experiences from one platform or ecosystem to another.”
Fabien highlights how the metaverse will not rise from one day to another, opening the door for us to enter. We have already experienced parts of it, mainly in video games, where we could create avatars and share spaces with other players. It now extends to other experiences, such as Ariana Grande’s concert in Fortnite or Karlie Kloss’ Fashion Klosette in Roblox.
So what is the purpose of the metaverse? Veronica mentions how the need to connect has become more and more evident and how the metaverse is a tool to address this need:
“I think that, especially after COVID, it’s been reinforced that we, as humans, have a fundamental desire to gather, communicate, socialize, etc., and the metaverse allows us to create new communication channels. One of the fundamentals of the metaverse is building communities.”
Meanwhile, Fabien uses a personal anecdote to illustrate the power of the metaverse in creating new ways to connect:
“My son is 11, and we moved from Canada to Copenhagen three years ago. He’s still in touch with his friends from school through his religious play sessions every Saturday through Roblox. He has kept his relationships in Canada, which is crazy. In the previous generations, you would have lost this touch.”
Intriguing, isn’t it?
Decentralization, interoperability, ownership, personalization, and privacy are some of the concepts that we discuss during this exciting conversation. Dive into the metaverse by listening to this episode of Globant’s podcast, Unscripted Tech.