It is important to compare the current version of the internet (Web 2.0) and the emerging one (Web 3.0), to understand why the new world’s advantages are worth our time, money, and effort. The table below charts out some of the key metaverse features between the two.
New technologies have come together to facilitate the vision of the metaverse. Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) headsets have become cheaper and more powerful, improving the user experience. Blockchain has enabled digital currencies and NFTs. The new methods to transact and own digital goods are allowing creators to monetize their activities through tokens. In addition to monetization, and as a means to exchange value, token-holders can also participate in the platform’s governance (e.g. vote on decisions). This democratic ownership economy coupled with the possibility of interoperability could unlock immense economic opportunities, whereby digital goods and services are no longer captive to a singular gaming platform or brand.
From a social perspective, the development of more immersive virtual experiences is helping people to build communities based on shared values, and to express themselves in more authentic ways.
It is this combination of technological, social, and economic drivers that are resulting in explosive interest in the metaverse.