Metaverse – The New Reality

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The Internet never ceases to amaze us how it unravels new possibilities around virtual social engagement, gaming, entertainment and work-life. Today for all of us, the internet-powered virtual world is as meaningful as our physical world. We live by the virtual world as much as we live in the real world. Though our real world is digitally connected to the virtual world, in the end, these are two different worlds. There is a line of separation between them. The blurrier the line gets, the richer is our digital experiences.

The Metaverse is all about converging our real and virtual worlds to improve our digital experiences related to social media, gaming, clubbing, work or any Internet-led experience. The Internet has always acted as a bridge for us to transcend into the virtual world, but how strong is this transcendence? What are our powers or possibilities in the virtual world?

Metaverse intends to give us more power than ever by creating new and better ways of virtual social engagement, entertainment, knowledge gathering & sharing, work, and travel experiences, and much more. Metaverse is the bridge that takes us to the virtual world and brings the augmented reality of the virtual world to our world.

The numbers for metaverse market size itself demonstrate its craze among people worldwide. The forecasts expect the metaverse market size to reach USD 814.2 billion by 2028 at a CAGR of 43.8%. It is expected that Metaverse will change the face of gaming, VR, and AI entirely.

Let’s explore and understand what all does Metaverse brings for us.

What is Metaverse?

Metaverse is not to be seen as static; rather, it is a subset of the Internet evolution. From text-based chatting, we evolved to share memories through images, then video-based social engagement, and now, we are entering the era of Metaverse. Metaverse intends to give us next-level platforms that are even more immersive, enabling us to dive into the experience and not just look at it sitting by ourselves.

Everything that we do online today, playing games, meeting, working, entertainment and connecting socially, Metaverse makes it more natural and vivid. Thus, the best way to understand the Metaverse is to experience it yourself. However, it does not fully exist yet, but some of the basic building blocks are coming up though. Some Blockchain Metaverse projects are already up and live; they are still in infancy but expanding fast with technology, UI, and design advancements.

However, even if we don’t have the full-fledged Metaverse yet, let’s try to visualize what it will look like?

Visualization of Metaverse

As mentioned earlier, the Metaverse is the convergence of the real and virtual worlds. So we can visualize the Metaverse as a superset of virtual realities or virtual environments. Think Metaverse in line with those sci-fi movies, where characters transcend into a virtual world, representing self through an Avatar, capable of larger-than-life capacities. Metaverse works on a similar concept. It will allow us to take up Avatars and be in virtual environments to have more meaningful social interactions. For instance, now remote office meetings happen over video calls, and all we get to see is a grid of faces. We feel connected seeing our colleagues’ real-time faces, but Metaverse intends to take it to the next level.

It aims to provide us with digital office rooms or meeting halls, where our Avatars will be able to sit with the avatars of our colleagues, make hand gestures, share expressions in real-time, just like it happens in an actual meeting room. So, Metaverse will provide us with a made-up reality for our remote virtual meetings, making our experiences more in sync with reality. Certainly, many technologies come into play here. Blockchain, ML, AI, IoT, VR and AR all these technologies will converge to power what Metaverse intends to offer us.

Metaverse applies to various verticals. Just like a virtual environment for a remote office meeting, it can enable friends from different geographical areas to virtually catch up for a live concert or a soccer game; it can allow people to have their digital homes where they can invite friends, it can add to virtual traveling, create luxuries virtual spaces like digital art galleries, museums, International Expos & trade fairs, the possibilities are endless. Gaming is one industry that will receive major transformation because of Metaverse.

How can Blockchain empower Metaverse?

Blockchain plays a key role as the foundation stone of Metaverse, especially if the idea is to build a Decentralized Metaverse, an open ecosystem, not dominated by a single company. Metaverse will be a multi-layer ecosystem, and as mentioned above, many technologies will come into play here.

In creating a decentralized Metaverse, blockchain technology is useful for regulating areas like digital proof of ownership, digital collectability of assets (such as NFTs), governance, transfer of value through crypto, interoperability, and more.

The concept of Metaverse is to present multiple interoperable virtual spaces to which users can transcend using AR or XR devices. Take the example of Multiverse games. As users spend more time on the Metaverse game world, move from one virtual space to another, own digital identities and in-game assets, participate in gaming activities, they need a reliable currency to power all their activities within the Metaverse. Also, the users will need a distributed ledger system and smart contracts to keep the transaction records and automate their transactions. Blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies are ideal for supporting these requirements of Metaverse; also, they will keep the security tight.

However, Metaverse, be it a game or social media platform or some enterprise application, is a collection of several 3D projects and virtual spaces. Custom interoperable blockchains or interoperability solutions will be integral for the functioning of Blockchain Metaverse.

What are the key components of Metaverse?

Contemporary Blockchain Metaverse projects are decentralized platforms. Some function as Gaming platforms, some as NFT marketplaces, some as the virtual objects development platform, similar to Minecraft, and some projects combine everything into one. However, as basics, Blockchain Metaverse comprises the following elements.

  • High bandwidth decentralized network of computers to host the Metaverse beyond the control of a single company or a centralized body facilitating decentralized data transmission for persistent, real-time connections
  • Open and interoperable standards for media, like text, images, audio, video, 3D scenes, 3D items, 3D sequences and vectors to support 3D applications.
  • Open programming language standards such as HTML, JavaScript, WebXR, WebAssembly, WebGPU Shader Language, etc.
  • eXtended Reality (XR) hardware such as smart glasses, Omni treadmills, haptic gloves, VR headsets, industrial cameras, scanning sensors to interact with the Metaverse
  • Blockchain and smart contract for transparent, censorship-resistant and permissionless transactions.
  • Computing power to support data processing, AI, projection, etc.
  • 3D immersive simulations of worlds featuring real-world ecosystems
  • Payment gateways to support digital currency exchanges and payment across fiat and cryptocurrencies.

Top Blockchain Metaverse projects in 2021

Metaverse is a great innovation in making, but it is still in its infancy. Many big tech giants, including Facebook, are investing in building their metaverses. Facebook’s Metaverse will be more of a centralized ecosystem, however, focusing on decentralized metaverse projects, let’s have a peek into some blockchain metaverses.

Decentraland

The biggest and most popular blockchain metaverse is Decentraland. It is an Ethereum-based virtual reality platform that allows users to create their 3D worlds, buildings, hotels, parks, casinos, and much more and sell them to others. In Decentraland, the highest payout received from the selling of a virtual plot is €2.1 million. Users can also put their lands and creation into rent.

The Metaverse of Decentraland is divided into 90,601 individual parcels or land of exactly 16 x 16 meters. Each parcel is represented by an ERC-721 NFT. The owners of the NFTs or land are free to develop their lands as they want and prepare them for sale. Decentraland uses a decentralized autonomous organizational structure (DAO) for governance decisions. Decentraland hosts an NFT Marketplace to facilitate the buying and selling of the lands and other creations.

Axie Infinity

Axie Infinity is an NFT-based battling game powered by Blockchain and oracles. As a metaverse, Axie Infinity illustrates how a virtual game can level up the real world by providing the players the opportunity to derive real value from a game above and beyond the pleasure of gaming. It is not a standard play-to-earn game but a decentralized player-owned economy, where contributors receive compensation so hefty that many are playing the game as the main source of income. For many, working in Axie Infinity metaverse is an opportunity not to work overseas for making income.

STARL

STARL Metaverse is a Space-inspired virtual world powered by a blockchain, delivering the experience of exploration, discovery, and creation of space-related content along with the experience of gaming and NFT trading. In STARL NFT marketplace, users can trade in NFTs for assets of satellites, living modules, custom spacecraft, virtual real estate, character modifications, and more. STARL ecosystem upholds a vast virtual economy with its own cryptocurrency $STARL. Holding to the concept of Metaverse, STARL intends to deliver n upgrade from the physical world by creating possibilities to explore and experience the space things otherwise limited in our real world.

What Metaverse Services LeewayHertz can offer?

At LeewayHertz, we are excited to work on mega and futuristic projects like Metaverse. Our developers have deep understanding and knowledge of Blockchain, NFT, Crypto, 3D development tools like Unity, and the skills to develop the 3D spaces. Our team can render a range of services to support the development of Metaverse projects spanning to Gaming, Social Media and NFT marketplaces. Our metaverse services include:

  • Decentralized Platform Development
  • Metaverse App Development
  • 3D Space Development
  • Non-fungible Tokens
  • Metaverse Marketplace
  • Metaspace Marketing

If you are looking to optimize or build a decentralized Blockchain Metaverse project, we are happy to partner with you. Please connect with our metaverse experts to discuss more.

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Author’s Bio

Akash Takyar
Akash Takyar
CEO LeewayHertz
Akash Takyar is the founder and CEO at LeewayHertz. The experience of building over 100+ platforms for startups and enterprises allows Akash to rapidly architect and design solutions that are scalable and beautiful.
Akash's ability to build enterprise-grade technology solutions has attracted over 30 Fortune 500 companies, including Siemens, 3M, P&G and Hershey’s. Akash is an early adopter of new technology, a passionate technology enthusiast, and an investor in AI and IoT startups.

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