Facebook made headlines last week when it announced it would be hiring 10,000 people in the European Union to develop the “Metaverse.” But what is the Metaverse, exactly?

Google the term, and you’ll find various definitions. According to Wikipedia, the Metaverse is “made up of the prefix “meta” (meaning beyond) and the stem “verse” (a back-formation from “universe”); the term is typically used to describe the concept of a future iteration of the Internet, made up of persistent, shared, 3D virtual spaces linked into a perceived virtual universe. The Metaverse in a broader sense may not only refer to virtual worlds, but the Internet as a whole, including the entire spectrum of augmented reality.”

The Internet is relatively two-dimensional, but novel connectivity allows different devices and technologies to augment the world into a different reality. When you’re unable to discern the difference between reality and virtual reality, robots demonstrate three-dimensional awareness, or virtual assistants build a relationship with a human; welcome to the Metaverse.

Digital avatars (Second Life) represent the Metaverse today, where the virtual world grows and evolves based on the avatars’ actions and society within it. Other games such as Fortnite, Minecraft, and Animal Crossing exhibit user-generated content in addition to large user bases in comprehensive worlds.

Due to the virtual shift to online, based on the global Covid-19 pandemic, it’s now common to hold family reunions on Zoom, weddings on Animal Crossing, graduations on Minecraft, and virtual dressing rooms. These seemingly small yet magnificent transitions represent a changing world…one that will be here before we know it.

Business-to-robot-to-consumer relationships will soon be the new norm, with virtual assistants and robots connecting with consumers on a more personal level. People might act or behave differently in the Metaverse than in real life.

In terms of lifestyles – shopping, culture, entertainment, and so much more – the Metaverse will be a novel, changing phenomenon, much like the advent of the Internet. Get ready; it’s coming soon!

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Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.