When we first came across a virtual reality helmet back in 2016, my partner and I were extremely excited. It fit my android phone and not his, with no way to adjust the size or resolution. It felt cheap, like wearing a bulky pair of binoculars.
Back then, if you didn’t have an Oculus, you had to settle for a cheap ‘Made in China’ knockoff. Additionally, few brands had created apps or videos suitable for a VR headset. Most were a 5–10-minute horror flick or a roller coaster ride. Nonetheless, we enjoyed it. It was new and innovative. Little did we know that the VR/AR headsets would pave the way for the ‘new’ internet.
The rise of the Metaverse
Mark Zuckerberg chose the word ‘Meta’ which means ‘beyond’ in Greek as the new name for Facebook.
His main reason for the rebrand was to separate the social media platform Facebook from the company name. His goal, which is not a new idea, is to create a digital world like the real world. He called it “The Metaverse”, which consolidates Facebook (the social media platform), Instagram, and WhatsApp.
Knowing the influence Facebook, sorry Meta, has on the digital world, the word, ‘Metaverse’ may become the official word for Web 3.0.
We’ve come a long way from Web 1.0 which was mostly read-only content.
Web 2.0 or the World Wide Web (www), which is the internet we know today, is readable and shareable content, built on the popularity of Myspace and Facebook.
On the other hand, the future of the internet, or Web 3.0, is the Spatial Web. It is a 3D digital world that is personable and portable. It’s about having smart applications, artificial intelligence (AI), decentralized tech, data architecture, blockchain technology, and the ability to immerse people in spaces that are 3D.
In the World Wide Web (www), websites are linked together. The Spatial web (Metaverse) links people, spaces, and assets altogether.
It may sound complicated, but it isn’t rocket science. It makes the most out of technology, making it easier to navigate, communicate and engage with people and brands.
Right now, with a virtual/augmented reality device (VR/AR) like the Meta Quest, (previously known as the Oculus) you can access a digital version of our world, or create your own, made possible by apps, games, and websites.
The good news is that we’re just testing the waters of VR and AI, but these digital advancements are set to become the norm in the future.
What does this mean for my business?
Gone are the glory days of Facebook (the social media platform, not the company).
Facebook’s rebrand to Meta means connecting more people to your business. It will pave the way for the development and integration of the metaverse. This will allow your business to improve, augment and enhance almost every facet of its existence: value-added education, creativity, investments, and partnerships, as well as business growth and profit.
Edward Wilson said, “The real problem of humanity is the following: We have Paleolithic emotions, medieval institutions, and godlike technology…”
Research shows that participants have a 27% higher emotional reaction to VR content (3D) in comparison to 2D content, which we currently use through our mobile phones, laptops, consoles et al.
So, in the Metaverse, if you’re educating or engaging your audience; really tapping into their Paleolithic emotions and connecting them to your brand/product/service, then you’re creating a space where they can stay longer.
As I write this, the current algorithm on Tik Tok for a video to appear on the ‘For You” page, and potentially trend, allows for 7-second videos with more text on the screen. This results in more views but minimal engagement.
The metaverse flips the script.
For example, if you start using VR as a fitness platform to exercise, you will exercise for longer and harder. You won’t feel the aftereffects as much because VR augments how we perceive any fitness routine. For some, they could look at it as a video game, for others, a fake reality, therefore not processing the physical activity as an actual activity.
Brands/products can create content in 3D spaces that give an immersive experience for the consumer to enjoy. Look, feel, touch, wear, do a test run, etc., just as you would a physical store, but from anywhere in the world. The possibilities are endless.
3DLOOK, a clothing company is one among many brands already diving into virtual reality to promote their products.
Grow your business in 2D AND 3D
In December 2021, Bill Gates predicted that, within two to three years, most Zoom meetings will migrate to the metaverse, with a VR headset—and a digital avatar.
A Zoom call in VR lasts 34 minutes longer than a 2D one, and 16 minutes longer than a physical ‘boardroom’ meeting. With the head of HR creating a 3D meeting room this week, and the accounts intern creating another one next week, Zoom meetings would be unpredictable, ergo, interesting or fun.
No more long commutes, stuck in traffic for hours on end, increasing CO2 emissions.
No more interactions with sick work colleagues.
The opportunity is to go 3D: create a 3D digital workspace for your employees or a conference room for clients and business partners. Entertain your suppliers in Hawaii or sign a contract on the moon. The only limit would be your imagination.
By having a digital space, we’ll be giving mother nature time to rejuvenate, saving our planet for future generations to enjoy.
In the long run…
The rebrand to Meta may have been Zuckerberg’s solution for the company to stay relevant in the internet’s inevitable future. But in doing so, he just paved the way for the new internet, Web 3.0, the Metaverse.
Everything online will converge on the metaverse.
At DBH, we’ll go beyond creating a 2D website for your business. Let the Digital Bees expand your business into the metaverse. We’ll create apps or videos that are responsive on VR devices. From a virtual office experience to an app that sells your product/service. Don’t let your business fall behind.