The metaverse isn’t only going to change the internet, it’s going to change everything about the way we live and connect with people. According to Facebook’s vision for the metaverse, the goal will be to initiate fully immersive digital connection through virtual and augmented reality. This will make it possible to engage and meet people by simply putting on a pair of VR glasses or unlocking your phone, rather than actually having to get dressed and leave the house!
At the moment, the metaverse is focusing on the world of gaming and 3D avatars, which you’ve probably started seeing across Facebook, Instagram and Messenger. Meta will be focusing on gaming because it’s the most logical evolutionary transition of virtual worlds; in the gaming community, players are used to being immersed in a virtual world, choosing the character that they will play while in that world. In the metaverse, it will be a similar environment only our characters will be 3D avatars that we are able to design, dress and build a reputation for in digital space.
All of this will be initially made possible through Meta’s Horizon social VR experience that is going to transform how we think of social connection. The VR world-building experience has already been opened to users in the US and Canada, and creators are already starting to make use of the space. Some are opening recording studios and yoga spaces for digital avatars to visit and enjoy. It may seem crazy that it’s possible to talk about digital avatars enjoying something, but remember that this is what the metaverse is all about! Living vicariously through our digital avatars.
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Social connection will also change as users will be able to access the metaverse on their phones and not just by putting on a pair of VR glasses. These include experiences beyond VR that will be accessible through apps like Facebook and Instagram, as well as others to come. That means that instead of your story feed being a video, it may soon start to be interactive, allowing you to really travel through someone else’s experience. This will bring us closer to our social network of contacts than ever before.
For influencer marketing, this means that brands will have the opportunity to create completely unique experiences for consumers, encouraging them to purchase their product or service using experiential marketing. Users will look to brands and influencers to share experiences rather than pictures of products, which means that brands will have a unique opportunity to reinvent themselves and their brand message when the metaverse launches into the mainstream.
While Meta is the company that is leading the transition into the metaverse, other businesses and creators will likely generate immersive experiences, but those will likely be dependent on Meta’s framework to reach the largest user base. So it’s likely that Meta will have a significant role in shaping what the communication and social engagement of the future will look like.
The metaverse offers a lot of exciting possibilities for the future of our world, but mainly for our social worlds and the way that we communicate.