Metaverse is a space between the digital and analog world. All areas of life should find their digital counterpart in it.
What is Metaverse?
Metaverse is a space that is created through the interaction between our living environment and the digital space. Experts see it as a forward-looking technological basis for social change. But what does metaverse actually mean?
If we take a closer look at the word, we can already guess what it is about. The prefix “meta” comes from the Greek and indicates another level. The “verse”, on the other hand, points to the universe, i.e. the space in which we live.
A metaverse is a kind of parallel world that is related to our reality, but is not congruent with it.
In the true sense of the word, there is not just one metaverse, but several different ones. The best known from the crypto sector are Decentraland or The Sandbox. The Mark Zuckerberg Group is also planning to create its own metaverse with “Horizon Worlds”.
What are the characteristics of the metaverse?
Since the metaverse or the various metaverses are currently still in the process of being created, the properties of the metaverse can still change. Nevertheless, there are a few points that can already be determined. +
Mathew Ball describes the following properties in his essay on the subject.
From the Metaverse
– will be persistent and, like the internet and the blockchain, will always go on.
– will be synchronized and run live or in real time . There will be certain events and happenings that will “happen” in due course.
– will not be limited to the maximum number of users
– will have an independent economy in which companies and individuals can thrive. In this sense, it will also create new forms of work .
– will create a connection between the physical and the digital world.
– will establish connections in terms of interoperability between the individual metaverses
– will offer new ways to create digital content .
Finally, Matthew Ball describes the Metaverse as a “gateway to digital experiences” that is simultaneously connected to physical experiences and represents the next great platform for work.
Metaverse: Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook and Meta
On October 28, 2021, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg announced at a developer presentation that the group should be called Meta from now on. The reason: In the future, the company should focus on creating a metaverse.
However, the renaming was not enough. Because Mark Zuckerberg was not the first company founder who came up with the idea of naming his company Meta. For example, Facebook had to pay the Meta Financial Group $50 million to use the name. Zuckerberg also had to reach an agreement with a computer company called Meta PCs from Arizona. This demanded 20 million US dollars for her name.
In a PR video, Mark Zuckerberg revealed that changing the name to Meta doesn’t change Facebook’s vision of “bringing people together.” This is also the most important experience you could have with the Metaverse. In his promo video, Mark Zuckerberg also provides insights into what’s possible in the Metaverse.
He speaks of a “home space”, i.e. a digital space that depicts your own four walls. Filled with things that have their equivalent in the real world, but also with things that only exist in this form in the virtual world. Furthermore, it should be possible in Zuckerberg’s Metaverse to transfer media from the “real” world to the digital one: photos, videos, art, music, books, games, etc.
What metaverses are there?
Horizon Worlds: Mark Zuckerbergs Meta-Metaverse
Mark Zuckerberg presents “Horizon Home” as the digital place for these home spaces. Above all, it should be possible to create such home spaces here. People are said to come together in this metaverse in the form of avatars. In “Horizon World” it should in turn be possible to create “digital worlds”, i.e. games and apps – the main metaverse.
But that’s not all: work should also be possible in the Zuckerberg metaverse. This is how you can set up digital offices where people come together to work. With Project Cambria, which is planned for 2022, the first connections to the people behind the avatars should already be created. These should be able to imitate facial movements in real time, for example, in order to draw an image of people that is as realistic as possible.
Microsoft: With Mesh against Zuckerberg
Microsoft’s response to Mark Zuckerberg’s Horizon is Mesh. This is a separate metaverse that the company wants to integrate into its Teams communication interface. It should start at the beginning of 2022. The first steps into the Microsoft metaverse should be such that it will be possible to latch into calls with your own avatars.
In the future, it should also be possible to create virtual rooms in the Microsoft metaverse. This is where you can meet for meetings. Even an online meeting of holograms should be possible at some point. The whole thing should also be interesting for companies. So there should be the possibility to recreate your own premises in virtual space. Alternatively, one can also fall back on the prefabricated rooms of the Bill Gates group.
Decentraland is a metaverse open to the public since 2020. The name suggests it: We are dealing here with a metaverse that comes from the field of decentralized technologies. It is based on blockchain technology.
Sandbox is one of Decentralland’s main competitors. This Metaverse also comes with its own cryptocurrency – SAND. Sandbox has one of the largest marketplaces for NFTs.
Roblox is an online gaming platform that allows users to design their own games or play existing games. It is often mentioned in the same breath as the Metaverse. However, its functionality is rather limited compared to “real” metaverses, which is why its classification in this category has not been clarified in the end.
How do I get into the Metaverse?
It doesn’t take much to dive into the Metaverse. It is sufficient if you have an internet-enabled device and the Metamask wallet. The following steps are necessary:
– Install Metamask wallet
– Invoke metaverse of your choice
– Log in
– Getting started
Want a little more detail? No problem. There is a step-by-step guide for that.
Metaverse Tutorial: The step-by-step guide
This guide will walk you through step-by-step how to get into the Metaverse.
Step 1: Install Metamask Wallet
If you don’t have a wallet yet, just check out our Metamask tutorial . There we explain step by step how to set it up.
Step 2: Go to the metaverse of your choice
Now if you want to go to the Metaverse, you have a choice. You can find Decentraland here . If you want to dive into the sandbox Sandbox, you can go this way.
Step 3: Sign up and log in
Once you have accessed the respective page, all you have to do is log in with your Metamask wallet.
To do this, click on “Continue with your Wallet” (Decentraland) or “Sign in” (Sandbox)
Step 4: Get started
Now you can start setting yourself up in the Metaverse. Each Metaverse offers different ways to create an avatar or buy virtual land.
How can I invest in the Metaverse?
There are several ways to invest in the Metaverse. The simplest and most obvious method is to buy one of the corresponding cryptocurrencies and speculate on increases in value.
The following cryptocurrencies are ideal for investing in the Metaverse:
– MANA (Decentraland)
– SAND (Sandbox)
Anyone who assumes that the Zuckerberg group will prevail with Horizon could already invest in Facebook shares.
With all these possibilities, however, one should keep in mind that we are currently still in a very early phase of the Metaverse. Accordingly, it is not yet possible to say with certainty which project will actually prevail. There may also be a new provider around the corner who will turn the Metaverse investment landscape upside down again.
Another way to invest in the Metaverse is to buy virtual land. Again, however, it must be noted that this is a highly speculative matter. Especially since land prices have risen sharply in the past. It cannot therefore be ruled out that the market will overheat here. To buy lots, simply log into the relevant metaverse and visit the marketplace. There you can trade land, but also other digital assets.
These include, above all, collectibles in the form of NFTs. For example, this can be unique clothing items for your avatar. Here, too, there is at least the possibility that you can later sell them profitably.
Metaverse: The most important coins
AXS: Axie Infinity Token
The AXS token belongs to the blockchain game Axie Infinity. Players can get paid to play there. For example by breeding the monsters belonging to the game, letting them fight against each other or collecting certain items in the game. These can then be traded or sold.
MANA is the cryptocurrency of choice to pay in the Metaverse Decentraland. There it is possible to buy plots of land or equipment for your avatars. But in order to enter Decentraland, all you really need is an internet-enabled browser.
SAND is the cryptocurrency for Sandbox. Here, too, users can buy digital land. Overall, the sandbox metaverse focuses heavily on NFTs. In December 2020 it was announced that the Berlin Wall was being rebuilt there. Replicas of individual sections of the wall found their way into the digital world in the form of NFTs.
Metaverse: Criticism and Dangers
As fascinating as the Metaverse is with all its possibilities, it does not come without its risks. Critics point to the aspect of social loneliness, to which a retreat into the metaverse could lead.
The problems that are already coming to the surface at Facebook, such as cyberbullying, sexual harassment on the one hand and data protection problems and data collection on the other, could multiply when the group moves to the metaverse.
Likewise, the shift to the virtual is seen as dangerous in terms of mental health. The digital retreat could therefore lead to depression, anxiety and obesity and addiction, as is already being observed in video game addicts. Likewise, a distorted perception of reality from a metaverse point of view is cited as a possible danger of the metaverse.