Why Companies Should Embrace the Metaverse and Web 3 Technologies
As a kid, I remember watching George Jetson speak with his boss, Mr. Spacely, through the TV, Penny’s smartwatch from Inspector Gadget, and Lieutenant Uhura’s Bluetooth earpiece in Star Trek. In fact, there were many TV shows and movies that set precedence on how we would communicate in the future. Who could have imagined these technologies would be so commonplace in how we conduct everyday business.
As we have seen throughout the pandemic, the way we communicate, work, and even attend school has forever been altered. From young to old, it is as if we all became Zoom or Microsoft Teams pros overnight. Physical meetings, phone calls, conferences, and schools were replaced with virtual meeting spaces. But as technologies progress, it is necessary that we progress along with them. The Internet as we know it is changing, but what does this mean for your organization?
Over the last several years, blockchain technology has been gaining popularity amongst many industries as a corporate strategy to solve many pain points around the streamlining of processes, addressing security concerns, or serving as a financial instrument to hedge against inflation. Despite the numerous use cases of blockchain, many companies fail to see where they fit into this new decentralized web.
Web 3.0, or Web3 as it is affectionately called, is a term that has the interwebs buzzing. By no means is this a replacement for our current Internet, but an extension of our current infrastructure. How did we get here? Figure 1 highlights it in detail. In the beginning, establishing your presence on the Internet meant owning your own domain name. This was the beginning of owning some sort of digital real estate. Like regular domain names, if you did not acquire your name early, it could end up costing your company thousands, if not millions of dollars, to secure your brand. Next, you needed to secure your handles on multiple centralized platforms, and we all know how cumbersome that was. Establishing yourself in Web3 is no different. Whether you are using a .crypto, .eth, or one of the many other extensions, services like ENS or Unstoppable Domains are making it easier to create a decentralized identity. This brings us to the Metaverse.
Figure 1: Progression of the web
Welcome to the Metaverse.
By no means is the concept of virtual reality new, but it has become a new marketplace for Web3. Many companies are already looking into the Metaverse to promote their brand. Besides tech giants like Microsoft and Meta (formerly Facebook), other companies like Disney, Nike, Coca-Cola, Warner Bros., Gucci, and Hyundai have all recognized the importance of extending their brand into the Metaverse. What do these brands understand about the Metaverse that others do not? Imagine having a state-of-the-art, high-powered, multi-speed fan, but you are trying to sell it in the middle of the desert. You might not get many sales. You can have an excellent product, but if your audience does not know about you, it will not matter. It is Marketing 101; you must go where the people are. With nearly 10 million headsets shipped in 2021 and a predicted 50% increase this year, the masses are flocking to virtual reality in droves. It is estimated that the market size of the Metaverse will be $800 billion by 2024. With the recent acquisitions of gaming platforms, one can only imagine how companies like Microsoft will leverage these capabilities in the augmented and virtual reality space.
With key technologies like blockchain, Web3, and virtual reality, companies must recognize the importance of acquiring their decentralized identities and establishing their presence in this digital real estate by making adoption a priority.
The author is Fred Brandon:
As a technologist with over 20 years of IT experience, Fred has developed solutions and spoken at various venues internationally. He has consulted with various organizations in both the public and private sector on an array of areas including business automation, blockchain, travel, logistics, content management, and Microsoft 365 training. He teaches a course on enterprise blockchain with Althash University, a global online program that focuses on blockchain technology. His best-selling book, Adopting Blockchain and Cryptocurrency: Embracing a Digital Future, continues to be a great resource for introduction into the blockchain space. Now, as the Executive Director of the Fred Brandon FLAMES Foundation, he focuses on helping underserved communities remain competitive in the workforce through education in technology and financial literacy.
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