It is no news that Facebook or, rather, Meta is going all-in on the metaverse, as the rumors suggested. The social media giant has launched a major redesign as it pursues an idea that looked like science fiction only a few years ago. Microsoft and these tech giants, Microsoft, Apple, and Facebook, are putting a lot of effort into the augmented reality and virtual reality sector.
The term “metaverse” conjures up images of unrealness, but there are other tools that can be utilized in conjunction with virtual and augmented reality.
Future tech, which is now frequently eclipsed by the term “metaverse,” is a major target of the big techs and so this kind of move by Facebook will become even more common with time. This is something we should be on the lookout for as the digital transition unfolds over the next few years.
What is the Metaverse?
So, what exactly is a metaverse? The simplest explanation is that it is a collection of shared digital areas that extends beyond the existing internet. It’s a location where you could conceivably live your entire digital life. That could imply that you have your digital persona who purchases digital goods using virtual cash. We’ve seen bits and pieces of it emerge in recent years, but Meta wants to speed up the process.
The only difficulty is that it might already be too late in the game. The video game industry has already begun to sketch out the metaverse, with Epic Games leading the charge. Meta, on the other hand, isn’t cool enough to compete.
Race to the Metaverse
The metaverse isn’t a novel notion for anyone familiar with the game world, despite what Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg would have you believe. Tim Sweeney, the founder of Epic Games, has been public about his desire to create a metaverse for years. The firm has already placed a lot of groundwork in an unexpected place: Fortnite.
Gaming and the Metaverse
The massively popular multiplayer game serves as a testbed for the metaverse concept. It’s a hugely sociable space that’s progressed far beyond its battle royale foundations. Take a close look at where it is now. Players design their avatars from a variety of skins that span a wide range of IPs. They have their currency that is only available in the game.
However, Fortnite isn’t the full metaverse; it’s simply a part of it. Epic Games has also demonstrated its dedication to the concept by investing in Core, a platform that allows gamers to create games and virtual worlds. Deadmau5 has already experimented with the platform to establish his little wing of the metaverse — almost like a website within a larger realm.
Epic Games has taken a cautious yet calculated approach to the metaverse. Rather than bombarding its audience with tech jargon and ridiculously grandiose promises, it gradually presented concepts through video games. Fortnite drew gamers in with an addicting hook, but with each new update and event, the game’s scope grew. In 2021, the globe is a very different place.
But, Epic Games isn’t the only company using this strategy. Roblox has grown from a kid’s game to a full-fledged worldwide platform that is out of reach for most people. I don’t even know where to begin to explain what’s going on in that space these days, but it’s already lightyears ahead of Meta.
There’s an important takeaway here, and it’ll be Meta’s Achilles heel: Younger generations are the ones who lead us to the metaverse. Let’s face it: the older we get, the more difficult it becomes to keep up with new technology. Do you have any parents who are still unable to send an email? We laughed at them, but when the metaverse becomes more developed, our kids might laugh at us, too.
Facebook, on the other hand, is not cool. According to The Verge, the social networking platform has been losing teenagers for several years. Over the next three years, it is predicted to lose 45% of its teen audience as current users age and no new ones join. That is a major issue. If Meta’s metaverse is to flourish, it needs that tech-savvy audience more than ever. I can already tell you that my Italian father, who recently decided it was time to register a Facebook account, will not be creating an avatar or spending virtual money on a phoney outfit anytime soon.
Microsoft Joins the Race
Microsoft is one of the big techs trying to gain a huge market in the metaverse. On January 18, 2022, Microsoft announced its latest acquisition of Activision Blizzard for over $69 Million.
Microsoft has already launched its foray into this market. Last year, Microsoft released the ‘Together Mode’ on its organizational software, Teams, which placed individuals into a ‘virtual space’ and allowed them to communicate as users looked for methods to combat online meeting weariness. “Mesh” for Teams, which will allow individuals in different physical locations to meet and communicate with shared holographic experiences, will take this a step further.
If this seems like science fiction, Microsoft stated that it constructed a virtual environment for Accenture before the pandemic, which the firm was able to use to onboard new employees, take them through initial training, and even assign their first tasks all within the virtual space.
Facebook has lost $500 billion since rebranding itself Meta. pic.twitter.com/zjOGcAq80O
— Mike Sington (@MikeSington) February 22, 2022
Meta is running late for a marathon that it claims has just begun. Epic Games, like other video game companies, already has massive audiences that are poised and ready for the future. To catch up, Meta will have to run twice as fast.
However in the midst of all that is risking the audience feeling about the new chain and all that comes with it. On February 2, 2022, Meta stock tanked by more than 20% during after-hours trading. This saw Facebook lose close to $200 billion or even more from their total market cap when the market opened.
Building isn’t easy even for the big brands, especially in new terrain with a decentralized mindset. However, Mark is a builder and a smart one at that. It’s best not to bet against Mark Zuckerberg, one of the finest entrepreneurs of the last decade.