Feb 6, 2024
In the ever-evolving landscape of technology, the metaverse took center stage in 2022, promising a shared 3D digital world for work and play. However, a new contender emerged in 2023, overshadowing the metaverse's spotlight—ChatGPT, a leading generative AI technology making waves in both business and consumer realms. As we delve into 2024, we witness the metaverse adapting to new challenges and opportunities, particularly with advancements in headset technology and the emergence of platforms like Apple Vision Pro and Meta Quest 3.
Metaverse Platform Attributes in 2024:
While the fundamental attributes of metaverse platforms remain largely unchanged in 2024, advancements in headset technology are poised to reduce friction for users. The introduction of Apple Vision Pro, targeted at professionals with a higher price point, contrasts with Meta's strategy of catering to the mass market with the more affordable Quest 3 headset. This diversity in options is expected to enhance user experiences, making headsets more accessible and economical for both consumers and corporations.
Noteworthy Metaverse Features:
Coined by sci-fi writer Neal Stephenson in 1992, the metaverse is characterized by features such as being massively scalable, interoperable, real-time 3D, synchronous and persistent, and maintaining continuity of data, identity, history, entitlements, objects, and payments across worlds. The integration of these features into our daily lives and work is still an open question, with ongoing developments and technological advancements.
Enterprise Use Cases:
Spatial computing experiences, driven by technologies like Vision Pro and Quest 3, are gaining prominence. The potential for immersive virtual experiences while interacting with the real world is a key focus. Marty Resnick from Gartner highlights the value of spatial computing, predicting that the convergence of the virtual and real worlds will revolutionize shopping, entertainment, and sporting events. ChatGPT's popularity is attributed to its accessibility, contributing to the shift towards spatial computing.
Metaverse Business Use Cases in 2024:
The industrial metaverse emerges as a significant business use case, with companies like BMW utilizing digital twins and NVIDIA's Omniverse platform for simulations in a virtual factory setting. Marketing and customer engagement are also identified as key business applications for the metaverse in 2024.
Top Metaverse Platforms to Explore in 2024:
Here's a curated list of metaverse platforms to watch in 2024, encompassing both consumer and enterprise-oriented options:
As its name suggests, Decentraland bills itself as a "full decentralized metaverse...owned and governed by its users."
The popular Battle Royale game was developed by Epic Games in 2017. Fortnite continues to build new virtual spaces, experiences, events and even live concerts.
Metahero is a blockchain-based platform from Pixel Vault that aims to bring advanced 3D scanning and modeling technology to the forefront, enabling users to create digital avatars in a wide range of applications that include gaming, e-commerce, and healthcare.
Meta Horizon Workrooms
A virtual immersive office, Meta Horizon Workrooms is designed to let people work collaboratively, share presentations and brainstorm ideas either using a Meta Quest headset or online.
Microsoft Mesh is the successor to last year's Altspace platform, which Microsoft shut down and refocused on enterprise use cases and leveraging Teams to let users make online meetings and events more immersive.
Users can meet, share and work together in private 3D virtual spaces on Mozilla Hubs, powered by Mozilla. They can select avatars to represent them and share content with others in their room.
Built on Pixar's Universal Scene Description (OpenUSD), and Nvidia technologies, Omniverse lets users create generative AI-enabled 3D tools, applications and services.
A 3D gaming environment dating back to 2006, Roblox also has social media features, and lets users create avatars. Developers can use Roblox's 3D tools to create their own games and worlds.
The Rooom platform is designed to let users create and share immersive digital experiences in 3D, augmented reality and digital reality. It can be used for marketing, sales, education, events, and entertainment.
The Sandbox world is built on the Ethereum blockchain and represented by NFTs. It lets players buy, sell, and create digital assets. Anyone can create their own 3D games for free.
Second Life's virtual world was created by Linden Lab to let users have a virtual life -- avatars interact with other avatars, places, or objects, as well as play games and create and sell products.
The open source virtual reality Somnium Space world is built on Ethereum blockchain and lets users build virtual homes and buildings, play games, purchase virtual properties, and trade in digital assets.
As the metaverse continues to evolve, organizations are increasingly leveraging traditional gaming platforms to create branded metaverse experiences, targeting younger audiences. The seamless integration of the metaverse into the daily lives of younger generations is a trend that corporations are keen to tap into, recognizing the need to engage with audiences where they spend significant time—virtual worlds. The future holds exciting possibilities as the metaverse journey unfolds, creating a new era of digital experiences and interactions.