In essence, the metaverse represents the ultimate realization of the internet, offering a seamless, immersive virtual world that leverages cutting-edge technologies such as virtual reality and augmented reality, blockchain, cryptocurrency, 5G internet, and NFTs. Social interaction in the metaverse will be just like what we experience on the internet, but in a single, universal, and all-encompassing virtual environment with no geographical bounds.
Exciting Ways the Metaverse Will Change Our World
#1 - New Jobs
This has already been happening since Meta rolled out the Oculus Rift. People have been working as card dealers inside its virtual casino, serving other virtual players. To couple that with a universal language translator (that has been in the works by Meta), there would be no service barrier between anyone, exponentially expanding globalization opportunities.
While Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Meta, claims that VR headsets boost our productivity just as laptops or computers do. He claims it would merely act as an accessory but not a replacement for our reality. Do you see yourself strapped on a VR headset and going to work for upwards of 8 hours a day?
#2 - Education
The metaverse could further democratize education by giving students worldwide an interactive and engaging experience. Through virtual simulations, they will be able to explore new worlds and have hands-on experiences that would otherwise be impossible in the real world. This could include learning about history, science, and geography in a more interactive and engaging way. This would be particularly useful for students with disabilities or those who live in remote locations.
Imagine visiting ancient Egypt and experiencing the pyramids or exploring the depths of the ocean to see different marine species. Students could go on virtual field trips without ever leaving the classroom or their homes. Hands-on learning experiences could also inspire curiosity and improve retention. For example, learning about physics and chemistry by experimenting with virtual materials, or learning about anatomy and surgery by performing virtual procedures. The possibilities are near endless, students could join virtual hackathons and collaborate with people around the globe, further widening their scope.
#3 - A daily dose of exercise but maybe not sunshine
Wait... Exercise can be fun? For those who hate exercise, the metaverse could make it a more fun, enjoyable and engaging experience by adding gamification, immersiveness, and social elements.
Whether you're a runner, yogi, or gym-goer, the Metaverse has something to offer. With the Metaverse, you can turn your workout into a thrilling adventure that takes you to new worlds and keeps you motivated to reach your fitness goals. Imagine going on a virtual run through a beautiful forest, with the scenery changing as you progress, providing a new experience every time. Or, practicing yoga in a serene beach environment, with the sound of the waves crashing in the background. You can even join virtual gyms, where you can work out with others in real time, participate in virtual competitions, and get instant feedback and support from virtual personal trainers. Video games like competitive shooters could also incorporate heavy exercise, similar to a game of airsoft in which you run around trying to eliminate the other team.
While this may not fully replace your workout (since we still need to get some Vitamin D from the Sun), the metaverse would be a healthy addition to our workout routine, especially during cold winter days or rainy mornings.
#4 - Meetings and Conferencing
Business meeting and conference expenses will be drastically reduced thanks to avatars and holograms. Frequent travelers like Elon Musk could beam himself in and stroll around with his engineers, reducing the frequent need to fly his plane to Shanghai to assess the production efficiency of the gigafactory.
While good things take time, progress has been taking strides. With Microsoft's Mesh, a technology that enables teamwork as if everyone were in the same room, team members can assemble in a virtual environment using 3D avatars or holograms. Mesh uses your webcam to follow your face and motions as it animates your avatar, mimicking the microexpressions or details we would perceive in real life.
#5 - Metaverse Shopping
The metaverse is set to revolutionize our shopping, making it an interactive and personalized experience. Imagine being able to try on clothes and see yourself wearing them, customize your order, and visualize how they will look in your home. The virtual fitting rooms will allow you to try clothes on from any angle and see how they look on different body types, making it easier for you to make better-informed purchasing decisions. Not only that, but you'll also be able to decorate your virtual home with virtual goods, creating a unique and personalized space that reflects your style and personality.
Shopping in the metaverse will also be more efficient and environmentally friendly. Virtual currency and robotic deliveries will make purchasing faster and more convenient. The robots will be able to locate your order in a warehouse, pack it, and transport it to your home, eliminating the need for human labor and making the delivery process more efficient. You'll also be able to shop for groceries in the metaverse, where you'll be able to walk around virtual aisles and pick out items, read the nutritional information and see recipes the store offers. This will eliminate the need for you to go to the store for groceries and reduce the number of trips you have to make, all while making it a fun experience!
#6 - Adventures, Vacations, and Family Time
The metaverse has the potential to change the way we travel and experience vacations, but it also has the potential to change the way we interact with our loved ones. With the ability to enter virtual worlds, people can visit destinations without ever leaving their homes. Not only will this mean that traveling to far-off places will no longer be limited by physical constraints or financial resources, but it will also allow people to stay connected with their long-distance family members more meaningfully.
Imagine meeting with your grandparents in a virtual world and spending time together, even if they live thousands of miles away. The metaverse will also allow for more interactive and personalized experiences for vacationers. For example, one could go on a virtual safari and meet with wild animals or visit a virtual theme park and ride on the newest rollercoasters.
The metaverse will also offer a new way to experience vacation rentals. People will be able to view and interact with the property in a virtual space before booking it, providing a new level of transparency and efficiency.
The current state of the metaverse is being limited by the technologies available. This may include limited processing power (to create photorealistic virtual reality), realistic haptic feedback (to make a believable sense of touch), and seamless connection (internet speed for high fidelity conferencing or cross Blockchain communication).
Once these limitations have been resolved, the possibilities for the metaverse are near endless. We could see an ever more connected world with fewer barriers and more collaboration. It's an exciting time to be alive and witness the birth of a new reality. Just remember to take a 10-minute break from screen time every hour when it happens! What other ways can you see the Metaverse changing our reality?