There’s increasing interest in the metaverse concept, and it’s an idea I’m absolutely fascinated by. But first, let’s take a step back to describe what I see it as.
My view of the metaverse is as a new iteration of the internet. I see it as a highly connected network of 3D virtual worlds which concentrates on social connection.
At the moment, we can enter the virtual world through 3D headsets or augmented reality enabled devices. Facebook – now known as Meta – is driving a lot of development and interest in the metaverse, but analysts suggest that while the technology is nearly there, it won’t reach its full potential for a decade or more.
I see it as a virtual world – a new digital universe, if you will – made up of a combination of virtual reality, augmented reality and video where users can effectively “live”.
Those of us – like me – who keep abreast of technology feel an imperative to keep-up with developments in the virtual world. I believe it’s where we will see extremely rapid technology development – and therefore, it’s a market ripe for investment.
In short, it’s a game-changer, predicted to be valued within the trillions of dollars in a few short years.
But if you’re looking at metaverse investment in 2022, there are four things I’ve discovered that you should consider.
Do your due diligence
Like a lot of emerging technology, there are thousands of new players. Thousands of opportunities. Some brand new – and increasingly young – tech entrepreneurs are out there looking for funding. But like any investment, ensure you do a deep dive into the prospects, the technology, the science, and the returns.
Like anything new, there will be those who promise to deliver the next big thing, which then flops.
Market analysis suggests the hardware – VR headsets, for example – is going to be a solid investment prospect over the short term. They also suggest mobile will be the dominant platform for the metaverse, especially with its ubiquity and always on, always accessible nature.
I understand that gaming will be the biggest driver of the nascent technology, while Facebook – sorry, Meta – wants it to become a place where we work, socialise and play. In the meantime, look out for media and entertainment companies with a metaverse focus.
Grab a plot
Purchasing virtual real estate in the metaverse seems akin to a gold rush – buying a piece of ‘land’ now, in the hope it will rise and rise in value. We’re already seeing big brands such as Adidas staking their claims.
“The Metaverse is currently one of the most exciting developments in digital, making it an interesting platform for Adidas,” a spokesperson for Adidas told the media.
Recent reports suggest the cheapest plots on popular metaverse platforms are already selling for more than US$13,000. “The price of a project can range from $10,000 to $300,000, (3.947229ETH to 118.416857ETH at the time of writing)” Leandro Bellone, CEO of metaverse company NFT Studios, was quoted as saying, “depending on the scale, the number of functionalities included, and the time needed to build it.”
Understand Blockchain, crypto currencies and NFTs
From my own learning, I know that this is a complex area, and like anything new, it takes time and personal investment to comprehend. The financial backbone of the metaverse runs on blockchain, with different metaverse platforms offering different cryptocurrencies to use within their virtual worlds.
And NFTs – the overarching currency of the metaverse, if you will – have seen trading of around US$40 billion at the time of writing.
Find your tribe
Given my love of technology and property investment, Upland is a great example of how to operate within the metaverse, while having fun. This virtual world uses real city maps and allows ‘players’ to buy virtual landmarks, like the Empire State Building, for example. It’s a unique social experience, with its own in-game economy and the chance to make a good amount of money in your ‘virtual’ property investments – a great example of early adoption of the metaverse.
There’s now even a metaverse Dubai, described as the world’s first virtual mega-city based on the real-world map of Dubai’s prime areas. I hope the virtual Dubai is as spectacular as the real-world city.