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Into the Metaverse: What’s Next for Digital Entertainment

The “metaverse,” a term first mentioned in Author Neal Stephenson’s 1992 science-fiction novel “Snow Crash,” is now a reality. Some might even say that we’re living in the future. With the metaverse upon us, the question is – are you ready? The augmented and mixed realities are taking schools, work and play by storm and it’s only a matter of time before everyone’s version of reality looks a little bit, well, different.

Hold on to your Oculus or Htc Vive Pro, because we’re taking a look at the latest in virtual reality and what’s to come in this groundbreaking realm.

The Technology to Create an Immersive Universe is Possible by 2040

There are currently over 400 million metaverse monthly active users, but that number is expected to multiply rapidly as technological advances progress. The important thing to remember is that the metaverse is a combinatorial innovation and requires multiple technologies and trends to function. Contributing trends include virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), head-mounted displays (HMDs), a cloud system, the Internet of Things (IoT), 5G, artificial intelligence (AI), and spatial computing. Within 18 years, the innovation involved in each separate component could make a more broadly adopted metaverse possible. Another key component will be the hype surrounding the advances in the metaverse. If people are excited about where the technology is and where it’s going, it will make adoption move faster.

Do People Use the Metaverse in Daily Life?

Interest in the metaverse is rapidly growing, and 54 percent of technology innovators, developers, business and policy leaders, researchers and activists surveyed by Pew Research Center and Elon University’s Imagining the Internet Center said they expect the metaverse to be a fully-immersive aspect of daily life for a half billion or more people globally by the year 2040. However, societal transformations in 2020 driven by the pandemic have already caused more people to access this technology daily for school, work and social activities. Additionally, gaming and the esports industry is registering a compound annual growth rate of 22 percent from 2022 to 2030, and with VR technology being a key component in the gaming experience, many users are already primed for a fully immersive metaverse without even realizing it. From smartphones to tablets, individuals are able to tap into the metaverse from anywhere or while on-the-go from their devices.

Augmented and Mixed-Reality Applications are Dominating

Many users are dipping a toe into the proverbial metaverse waters before diving right in, and those interested in VR, AR and AI technology are testing the technology sparingly as people still prefer a blend, where not “everything” they do is online. But, how people experience moments and events is constantly evolving, which was illustrated perfectly when 10.7 million players watched Marshmello perform live in concert within the video game, Fortnite. While it might be unlikely that people will only choose to experience concerts in the metaverse, the recent Marshmello turnout proves how in-person events are moving into a VR space with great enthusiasm and following, reaching fan bases around the world from the comfort of their own homes.

Investments Determine Pace of Growth

Investors in metaverse technology must be as enthused about the advancements as the users themselves, as the ability to profit is a key motivator to continue driving industry growth. In fact, recent tech advancements have ignited the metaverse, pushing its development forward at full speed with new investments amidst the popular mindset that the metaverse is “the future of the internet.” The rapid development of “extended reality” (XR), an umbrella term that encompasses VR, AR and MR, is predicted to move into all aspects from healthcare to entertainment.

Are you ready to fully immerse in the digital age through extended realities? Your local Verizon Victra store has you covered with devices to enhance your VR and AR experiences. From headphones and smartphones to speakers and accessories, we know what it takes to step into the technology of the future.


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