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What Is the Metaverse?

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What a brave new world of big opportunities and possibilities! Is it real to transfer everything to a meta-reality? How did we come to such a thing? How can we use this new technology in the most effective way? 

What is behind the concept? 

It seems we’ve already seen that in films and read in numerous books, but everything is getting even more serious. VR is coming closer and closer, and the gap between reality and fiction is becoming narrower day by day. Those aren’t just words but facts. Numerous projects are proving that the future lies somewhere in Meta. There are so-called metaverses where people socialize, play games, and have a business. 

It also refers to a digital economy, where users can create, buy, and sell goods and services. Most platforms have virtual identities, avatars, and inventories that are attached to one platform, but a metaverse might allow you to create a character that you can take anywhere.  

Elements of the metaverse already exist in such online game universes as Fortnite, Minecraft, and Roblox. Those companies see themselves as a part of the evolution of the metaverse. 

Main characteristics of the metaverses

 

  • Interactivity: users can communicate and interact with other users and metaverses;
  • Interoperability: avatars and goods should be able to be designed and used in any of the metaverses;
  • Corporeality: even if it's a virtual reality, it is still subject to the laws of physics and has limited resources;
  • Persistence: the Metaverse will exist despite time and place;
  • Full-fledged economy: together with interoperability, the goods can be used in any environment, regardless of who manages them. 

Metaverse companies

Some prominent companies have shifted to the metaverse. Among them are such huge and serious projects as Facebook that officially changed its corporate name to Meta. Other examples are Microsoft, Apple, NVidia, Google, Alibaba, and Binance. 

  • Microsoft presented Mesh, its virtual reality designed to be used, mainly, in Teams. They say it as an opportunity that “enables presence and shared experiences from anywhere, on any device, through mixed reality applications.” It should help users to collaborate in a more effective way in both physical and virtual locations.
  • Facebook, the company, declares that the metaverse is the next evolution of social connections and promises that Meta a 3D space where you can interact, learn, collaborate and play in many ways. They also say that in addition, it will create more new positions in Europe to bring the project to fruition. 
  • Alibaba is the one at the earliest stage, but it has already applied for several metaverse-related trademarks and has declared its intention to run in this technology race. Alibaba registered several trademarks, including "Ali Metaverse." 
  • Zara has launched their first virtual clothes collection in Zepeto. Using this metaverse, you can buy digital items through its own currency and interact with millions of users worldwide. But it is not the only company that joined the virtual fashion hype, as Dolce & Gabbana, Gucci, Adidas, or Nike already exist in metaverses.
  • Apple announced a headset that will integrate both AR and VR functions into one device. They could be powered by a high-end chip and could come equipped with high-resolution displays. 

Top 5 metaverse coins

Of course, you know that once you want to learn more about a coin or a token, you should go to CoinMarketCap where you can always check if an asset is valuable or not. So, according to the market cap at the moment of writing, there are top metaverse coins, and we’re going to revise some of them briefly: 

Decentraland (MANA) 

Decentraland is an online VR world, and it runs on the blockchain. It is built on Ethereum and was created to support the creation, development, hosting, and sales of virtual property.

Decentraland gives an opportunity to its users to purchase virtual property and then develop them as an online, virtual business. 

The platform works by allowing players to interact with the non-fungible assets called LAND that can be purchased and sold. The owners of LAND are able to create using those tokens, so they can be used as applications, gambling services, etc. 

MANA tokens power the platform, it’s the native cryptocurrency of Decentraland. MANA is an ERC-20 token you can use for governance and also purchase LAND or buy any number of virtual assets and services in Decentraland.

Axie (AXS)

Axie is a social network where all the participants buy and sell goods and services with real money. It offers turn-based combat between teams of three cartoon monsters named Axies; each Axie has special powers depending on their type (bug, bird, plant, etc.) and their body parts. Axie is a unique digital object that exists on Axie’s blockchain; if users want to create a new one, they must “breed” them by spending currency earned within the game or purchased from an exchange. 

AXS is the governance token and it is built on the Ethereum platform. Users earn AXS by playing the game. A token holder can vote on the game’s developments. Token holders can also stake the token in order to gain more AXS.

The Sandbox (SAND)

Sandbox is a virtual Metaverse that has its own token called SAND which is an ERC-20 token built on the Ethereum network. A user can stake it to earn interest or use the token to purchase in-game items within the game. 

Users create 3D digital items like creatures, costumes, buildings, land etc. Those items are added to the blockchain as non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and can be sold on The Sandbox’s marketplace or secondary markets like OpenSea.

THETA (THETA)

Theta is a P2P video streaming platform allowing users to earn tokens for sharing resources and improving the platform's performance in 4K and 8K video and virtual reality without consumers running up high technological costs.

THETA token is used for staking and governance, so by staking and running a node, users can earn a proportional amount of new TFUEL generated.

The native token is used for operations on the blockchain, such as payments for sharing or dealing with smart contracts.

 Enjin Coin (ENJ)

Enjin is a decentralized network that allows users to create digital assets, load them on the Ethereum blockchain, and merge them into games and apps. They have different projects - Enjin Network, Enjin Wallet, EnjinX, and Efinity, etc. 

Enjin Coin (ENJ) is the token representing a value on the Enjin platform. There are about 835 million ENJ in circulation. It is designed to integrate with games—you can use Enjin Coin as a currency and use the Enjin wallet for buying, selling, and trading NFTs. 

 

Closing thoughts

To build a metaverse is an attempt to make the usual Internet even more entertaining, interacting, and up-to-date thing. More and more companies are looking at new opportunities as a way to broaden their horizons. It seems that a new concept is not just a buzzword, it’s a long-term idea waiting for more developers and bright minds.  

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