Focus on the metaverse – What does the digital future hold for us?

The impact of the Metaverse on digital in the future

Although recent years have been marked by several major crises, the fact remains that we have seen some announcements that spark curiosity in some and enthusiasm in others. In October 2021, the boss of Meta, ex Facebook, announced the launch of the metaverse, a purely virtual world. This news continues to generate a lot of ink flows as several questions arise around this technology. The latter is already becoming part of our habits through certain tools we use. The question we now ask is what the impact is on our way of doing things in this era where digital dominates on all fronts. We will try to answer them in this article.

Metaverse: what is it?

If you have already read the novel snow crash» seen by Neal Stephenson or the movie Ready Player One , the metaverse is a technology that you will soon begin to observe. It is inspired by science fiction and was presented by Marc Zuckerberg as a virtual world where you can do everything. In its contracted form, metaverse, “meta” Lake “universe”, denotes a fictional, connected and immersive world, in which you can live part of your life through the use of virtual reality headsets and thanks to your 3D avatar.

According to the boss of Meta, this technology will provide its users with more social contacts, regardless of their location. They can go to a concert or work meetings, watch a basketball game, go to a fitness class, or go to a store to shop. The question regarding its impact on digital in the future is therefore legitimate. To access it, you need mobile electronic devices such as virtual reality headsets or augmented reality glasses.

Metaverse and the future of online games

The online game industry is one of the first sectors to be heavily impacted by the metaverse in the future. For many years, we have noticed that technologies on which it will be based have made breakthroughs in this industry. We are mainly talking about virtual reality, blockchain, artificial intelligence and augmented reality. With their current contribution to the online games industry, we can already imagine the place the metaverse will take. The aim will, of course, be to enable the user to enjoy themselves in terrestrial establishments from the comfort of their home. It is true that this has already been done, but with the metaverse the experience will be very different as it will work directly with its avatar and not with simple device controls. To achieve this, the metaverse, in collaboration with online game publishers, must offer a catalog of titles that takes into account all categories of entertainment options to appeal to all players.

Metaverse casinos will therefore have a toy library of slot machines and variants of blackjack, baccarat and roulette, bingo, poker, video poker and many others. Unlike today’s virtual casinos that offer the ability to play with live dealers from smartphones, establishments in the metaverse will allow users to interact directly with dealers and other players, always through their avatars. For example, if you are a fan of table games, you can play roulette for French speakers using your virtual headset or connected glasses. Better yet, you can win real money and even withdraw your winnings like in French online casinos. This will certainly happen thanks to the blockchain technology it will integrate. Cryptocurrencies will therefore be widely used. The only question one might ask is whether the metaverse’s establishments will be controlled by a specialized institution such as online casinos.

Metaverse and digitization of companies

Since the advent of new technologies, digitalization has proved to be the main source of business progress. Reducing costs, production and intervention times, better control of the evolution of data, these are all important advances that the vast majority of companies have experienced. The metaverse is presented as a technology that will revolutionize the global environment of businesses by paving the way for a multitude of opportunities while relying on certain pre-existing digital tools.

As suggested, this technology will be a great asset for companies that want to be closer to their customers or modernize customer relationships on all fronts. Big brands like Louis Vuitton and Gucci that have hosted virtual shows in the past are already taking advantage of this. The same goes for game publisher Epic Games who staged a massive virtual concert in the midst of incarceration via Fortnite. This event was seen by over 12 million players and hosted by the famous American rapper Travis Scott. Given the scale at which online shopping has grown in recent years, it is clear that commercial brands will also benefit greatly from the metaverse in the future.

For now, online shopping is done via smartphones and other connected devices. Very soon, users of this technology will be able to walk from home, for example on supermarket shelves, shopping carts, and making purchases. Payment is made electronically (with the intermediary of the blockchain)and when they are ready, they are delivered to your home. For some, we’re talking about e-commerce now, but for years to come, we’ll be talking about v-commerce. For example, with the metaverse, clothing sales brands offer their customers the opportunity to consult the characteristics of an article, or even remotely try them on before placing the order.

Metavers and virtual work

According to information from the Meta group, the video conference of the future is called Horizon Workrooms † It is a virtual workspace that allows team members to communicate with each other and make decisions like during regular meetings. You can easily communicate with your colleagues with avatars that are very realistic. Everyone’s gestures, facial expressions, and voices will sound so real you’ll think you’re in real life. You can even work on your computer, make projections, go on the internet and do research, etc.

In fact, this immersion will be so total that the world around you will no longer even exist. Horizon Workroomsthen reveals itself as a solution to certain pre-existing problems. For example, a normal video conference requires the user to lock themselves up in a highly isolated area and speak by bringing the microphone closer and finding the right angle for the camera. On the other hand, with Horizon Workrooms, you don’t have to worry about all its aspects. Users just need to put on their VR headset or smart glasses and you’re done.

To access the application Horizon Workrooms , users must have a Facebook account. This is still done through VR headsets and not through phones. Note that prior to the announcement of the metaverse project by Marc Zuckerberg, Microsoft had already focused on a similar technology aimed solely at professional use. It is called ” Mesh for teamsand will be the combination of its Teams software with the virtual functions of gauze. It will also replace traditional meeting rooms with purely virtual spaces where you can talk among colleagues without being in the same physical place. Like theHorizon Workroomsaccess collaboration tools such as screen sharing or a whiteboard.

Impact of the metaverse on the education sector

Today, it would be undeniable to say that the major new technologies of Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality and Artificial Intelligence have had a strong impact on the education sector, especially training and skills development. As much as they like, each of them has brought something extra to this increasingly digital sector. From this point on, we can already imagine that the metaverse will continue to provide cutting-edge education, as certain complex topics require the use of technology. Indeed, users will be able to take advantage of the metaverse to learn faster, but above all to increase information retention.

For example, on the learning side, the metaverse allows them to learn more about highly technical topics, simulate scenarios, or relive an old era. They can even attend class with classmates and communicate to solve certain problems. Metaverses also give them the opportunity to consult libraries or other learning places. As for trainers, the metaverse will allow them to deliver courses to learners without physical contact.

Teachers will also have the opportunity to chat with their students and interact with them perfectly. With all this speculation about the metaverse, it’s safe to say that this technology holds an intriguing future for us, where education and all the other sectors in which it will have an impact will undergo a radical change that will benefit the world’s population. taking advantage. † The question floating on the lips of some Metaverse users is whether it will affect mental health.

Would the metaverse be dangerous to mental health?

At this point, it would be a bit hasty to say that the metaverse is dangerous for mental health, as we haven’t experienced it yet. However, based on what already exists, including social networks and virtual reality, we can say that this technology is likely to cause addiction problems in users. In addition, a study conducted by theRoyal Association of Public Health (RSPH)has historically shown that depression and anxiety have increased by 70% in the 14-24 age group since the advent of social networks. In any case, based on such figures, we can say that the implementation of this technology of the future will have to be followed by safeguards to regulate its use.

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