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Tech companies aim to take over physical world with metaverse

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Oct 30, 2021 - 08:12 AM

WASHINGTON / BERLIN (AA) – While the coronavirus pandemic increased the demand for online services, especially blockchains and crypto assets, major companies looking for new methods to earn money, are now gearing up to capture the physical world through what they call the “metaverse.”

The concept of metaverse has appeared with investments worth billions of dollars from firms including Facebook, Microsoft, Roblox and Epic and is seen as the next level of the internet.

Through metaverse, companies hope to offer a new fictional universe that can be accessed via the internet.

With the rise in remote work, the demand for more realistic online interaction activities also grew.

People can go shopping, subscribe to services, work with colleagues and play games with others via metaverse’s 3D universe.

Metaverse enables people to enter the digital world, reflecting holograms of their own bodies to other places.

This kind of universe was portrayed in movies, games and programs including the Matrix, Pokemon Go, Minority Report and Black Mirror.

Facebook, which changed its name to Meta, managers define metaverse as an environment where people can feel like they are together while playing games or doing research.

Mark Zuckerberg, the CEO of Facebook or Meta, said his company will be a Metaverse firm within five years instead of a social media company.

He underlined that people will not only be online on platforms but live, work and game on the platforms.

Facebook announced that it will employ 10,000 people in Europe for building its metaverse universe.

The company, which also owns WhatsApp, Instagram and Messenger, aims to be a key player in the new internet world.

Next generation of internet

Tuong H. Nguyen, principal analyst at technology firm, Gartner, said metaverse is a persistent and immersive digital environment of independent, yet interconnected networks that will use yet-to-be-determined protocols for communications.

It enables, persistent, decentralized, collaborative, interoperable digital content that intersects with the physical world’s real-time, spatially oriented and indexed content, he stressed.

Metaverse is an example of a combinatorial trend in which several individually important, discrete and independently evolving trends and technologies interact to give rise to another trend, he underlined.

Victoria Petrock, emerging tech analyst, also said: “Metaverse has many different definitions. It’s becoming a bit of a buzzword now, but I think of it as the next generation of the internet.”

“A shared virtual 3D environment that can be accessed via the internet and that will enable users to seamlessly move between a variety of interconnected virtual spaces where they (via their avatars or other digital representations of themselves) can meet and interact, shop, work, collaborate, consume entertainment, and play games,” she said.

Petrock noted that in metaverse, all of the various separate digital platforms that exist now will theoretically come together and will be accessible via VR headsets, AR glasses, smartphone apps or other yet-to-be-invented devices.

“In the metaverse, people will be living their virtual lives in parallel to their in-person lives via digital doppelgangers – and may even be merging these lives, or not,” she added.

Saying that the basic concept of the metaverse has been around for a long time, she stressed that the pandemic has hastened efforts to develop and capitalize on it.

“Physical resources are currently finite, but digital ones can be infinite,” she said,

*Writing by Gokhan Ergocun from Istanbul

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