We have been building our online world since the day we started with our e-mail ID. Although the idea of the metaverse is not entirely new, it is surprising how quickly it has recently gained media attention. Additionally, the definition of "metaverse" seems to be evolving every day as more and more well-known companies start incorporating it into their long-term strategies.
But you would be interested to know that as much as it is hyped in contemporary times, Metaverse isn’t a new concept. We think of the metaverse as a completely immersive internet where we may access augmented and virtual reality and engage with a variety of locations using enduring avatars and cutting-edge computer technology, but metaverse has been in the picture since 1992 when sci-fi writer Neal Stephenson used this term in his novel ‘Snow Crash’ to describe a 3D virtual space.
Facebook recently underwent a significant rebranding, where it officially transitioned itself to "Meta," a moniker taken from the term metaverse, which was popularized by sci-fi books, video games, and movies. Since then, practically everyone around the globe has expressed a desire to understand what the metaverse is and, more significantly, what impact it may have on how people connect with one another.
To understand the terminology and its impact, we first need to look into the roots of metaverse itself.
The term metaverse originated back in 1992 when writer Neal Stephenson explains the metaverse as a virtual place where people interact with digital avatars in his sci-fi novel “Snow Crash”. The novel basically combines “meta” and “universe” to arrive at the term “metaverse”. But the evolution of the meaning and scope of the metaverse didn’t stop in 1992.
Following that, early metaverses or virtual interactive worlds were first presented in video games with the debut of games like Second Life, The Sims, and more recently, GTA V, Fortnite, and other titles. The main storyline of the film "Ready Player One" is another example of the metaverse in popular culture. Basically, with the introduction of metaverse as a 3D virtual space in a novel, the entertainment industry took up the idea to develop it into a world that can actually be experienced, and evolution hasn’t stopped since then.
Metaverse is a word but the possibilities are numerous. And many brands and organizations have already started exploring these possibilities by building their own versions or features of the metaverse. For example, Microsoft's entry point into the metaverse is Mesh. Employees will be able to communicate and engage with one another using online avatars during meetings thanks to the Teams virtual collaboration area.
Nike launched Nikeland in November 2021, an interactive world where visitors may participate in mini-games and indulge in a lifestyle centered on sport and play. Nikeland is located on Roblox, a metaverse platform known for offering its users immersive experiences. By extending its market into the digital sphere, the company may increase consumer engagement with its goods and services.
Another bespoke virtual world-building game, Microsoft's Minecraft, is positioned to be a strong contender for creating or contributing key metaverse concepts.
The future of the metaverse has been heavily debated in recent years. While some think it's just a passing trend, others are certain it's the direction the internet is going.
Metaverse is the way of the future because it elevates internet usage to a whole new level. Metaverse integrates future oriented technologies like blockchain, cryptocurrencies, DAO, AR/VR to power itself, and its role in the future is also demonstrated by the growing projects and investments made in this area by tech behemoths like Facebook and Google.
Additionally, cryptocurrency is the foundation around which the Metaverse is based and is influencing how future financial transactions will function. Adoption of cryptocurrencies in normal settings is one goal, but the Metaverse will be governed by them, so that is the much-anticipated future.
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