During times of social distancing and lockdowns, many of us turned to the digital world to recreate human connections. Communications with both loved ones and colleagues began to take place online, over a host of platforms, from gaming environments to virtual reality hubs.
In the last couple of years, companies like Epic Games have introduced environments where people can simply spend time with their friends hanging out in “Party Royale” mode. Animal Crossing started launching virtual graduations and even wedding ceremonies for its players. Even things like “Roblox birthday parties” became a significant trend, allowing people to connect with others, even if they weren’t’ doing so physically.
As we head into the future, we could see a number of celebrations and events happening in the metaverse, from concerts to weddings. As technology evolves, experts predict social experiences in the metaverse will include additional forms of simulated presence and human connection.
Imagine, for instance, being able to holographically transport yourself to a birthday party you were unable to attend. To create a greater sense of “presence” new technology will emerge to boost the quality of spontaneous social interactions with ambient communications and realistic human avatars.
Enterprise activities in the metaverse
The immersive, fully-accessible, and open nature of the metaverse makes it perfect for recreating critical human interactions. However, it’s worth noting these interactions can go beyond recreation and social events. Companies beginning to look towards a new future for the workplace are also considering how the metaverse might influence the enterprise.
Many enterprise applications for the metaverse will likely start life as enhanced versions of tools for consumers. For instance, companies can create incredible virtual environments to build products, test ideas, and innovate with colleagues. Virtual reality meeting rooms and interactions enhanced by MR and AR in the workplace are already growing increasingly common.
We’re seeing a rising number of companies in various industries already using extended reality and metaverse concepts to bring specialists and employees together in a hybrid environment.
The metaverse will also create more incredible opportunities for online learning and training in the workplace, allowing people to step into unique experiences where they can build muscle memories and new skills. We could even see the creation of virtual landscapes where people can more easily access tools for improving their workflow whether they’re inside or outside of the office.
Microsoft and Accenture have already experimented with building virtual workspaces for collaboration, while Facebook (Meta) Horizon offer ways to work virtually through headsets.
Media and entertainment in the Metaverse
Since gaming is the ground floor of the metaverse, it only makes sense the entertainment and media landscape would also benefit from this environment. Entertainment in the metaverse is already becoming a common concept, with many shared virtual events like concerts and celebrations happening in environments like Minecraft, Roblox, and similar spaces.
For many event organizers, the metaverse was a crucial tool for keeping people connected in a world where in-person events were no longer possible. Customers were able to view NFL games from the sidelines in VR or explore virtual exhibits in the Museum of National History. We’ve seen concerts and even world Premiers in Fortnight too.
Virtual events in the metaverse won’t just be for the consumer landscape going forward. We’re likely to see a number of professional groups leveraging the technology too. Future metaverse media experiences will combine in-person interactions with digital-twin events in the virtual world, to create more hybrid experiences for people who can’t travel to conference spaces.
The future of metaverse events will allow us to participate fully in event experiences from a distance, interacting with other eventgoers, purchasing items in real-time and even sharing information with the people you want to connect with in future.
The evolution of tools like 5G will be particularly important in ensuring real-time interactions between in-person and online event-goers.