The Metaverse concept has existed since the 1980s, but only in recent years have we seen hundreds of projects appear on the scene. What we are currently experiencing are gamified worlds with limited integration and engagement capabilities. Right now, Metaverse is still a blank screen for the first users to test and entertain the concept. However, as we look to the future of Metaverse engagement and bridge the gap between the physical and digital worlds, we need to push the boundaries and go beyond what is currently perceived as metaversion. Let’s start looking at the leaders who have started building another internet that promises to be strong for business, engagement and entertainment.
For Metaverse to succeed and become a common tool in people’s daily lives, it must allow users to engage with it. As a sci-fi concept or in the game world, metaversion sounds fantastic. However, in order to prosper as a social and trade tool, we must ensure that there is a layer of utility or incentives that keeps users in the investment. Web3-based technology plays a significant role in promoting the Metaverse concept and idea through blockchain technology, unmistakable tokens (NFT), augmented reality (XR), artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities, and more. Metaverse, which features tailor-made features, talks to its customers and selected industries, and creates new pathways to virtual engagement, will find the greatest value in the metaverse-as-a-service (MaaS) offering. It will allow its users to customize their own cities from AZ and will be the basis of another internet.
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So what is MaaS? It’s a service model where brands can define their spaces to be what they want them to be. The MaaS platform allows others to create digital placements that meet the unique needs of each user, whatever it may look like. For Metaverse to succeed as a practical concept, MaaS solutions will be key. Here’s the reason.
Each metaverse has different requirements
Everyone has a perspective or vision of what a metaversion could be or become, whether it is a gamified world or an access point to Web3. Users want the opportunity to define space and shape it into a platform that reflects even the most vivid ideas. The world where users can connect with their favorite music or visual artists will be very different from the world created to engage sports fans. While Web3 acts as a common thread across many meta versions, the idea is to use decentralization to ensure that each is unique and serves a different purpose. One size is not what the Metaverse is or should be about. With MaaS, adaptation will be critical and in the hands of the creators. The e-sports metaverse dome will rely more on team branding and gamified tokenization, while the entertainer may want to create space for virtual concerts.
Each metaverse has different requirements based on the industry and level of involvement they want to activate with the end user. Metaverse is a place where brands can expand their fan base and build communities as another layer of engagement. So not only will the elements be different, but the branding across the Metaverse will have to look different. The more brands they choose to expand their efforts to engage the community in Metaverse, the better they need to be.
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Not everyone will have the skills to set up this type of metaverse – just as not everyone could learn to code for site settings, but then came platforms like WordPress and Shopify. These platforms offered the opportunity to create a basic base built by technology and industry experts, while enabling end users to adapt to the brand and strategy. This is an advantage of MaaS.
A virtual environment is a place to socialize, build relationships, and create communities where people can communicate with other users in real time. To take it a step further, users should not be locked into a single meta version or community, but must be able to interact and transfer their avatar between other meta versions. Imagine that you would have to change your browser every time you had to visit a website, depending on where it was created or hosted. Probably not. Interoperability ensures that no metaversion created becomes a virtual island and that people across many metaversions will be able to exchange experiences and assets. Each element as such must be designed with interoperability in mind, because every Web3-based solution must work in every meta version — whether it’s a token, avatar, NFT, or other digital asset.
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Interoperability building will connect people, have open borders and make Metavers accessible to all. Borderless solutions have gained ground in other sectors, but the same concept must apply in the digital sphere. For example, in the e-sports meta-version, avatars should be able to travel to the meta-version of their favorite fashion brand so that they can also shop.
It allows users to build on top of the physical world
The metaverse should not act as a substitute for the physical world, but should be an added layer of engagement that enhances the real world experience. MaaS will allow users to integrate layers of engagement into their own physical world as well. For example, if a person has an NFT in their physical home, the visitor can scan the QR code and end up in that person’s metaversion, where the visitor can continue viewing the host’s NFT gallery – this feature can be activated via XR. Without MaaS as an option, Metaverse will continue to be a gamified world that exists only digitally as singular disconnected spaces. MaaS bridges the gap between the physical and digital worlds through immersive experiences and a constantly active layer of engagement.
As metaversion continues, it’s up to more than just blockchain experts behind them to shape what they’ll look like. MaaS will be a catalyst for creativity and also another necessary step for a thriving creator economy.
Related: The creators’ economy explodes in Metaverse, but not under Big Tech
When the Internet was launched in the 1980s, it would never have grown to its current form without those who started building on it. The first users will lay the groundwork for how Metaverse will evolve and what it will become. The mass acceptance of Metaverse can only occur if MaaS allows non-crypto natives to start creating their own metaversion, paving the way for the next generation of the digital ecosystem.
This article does not contain investment advice or recommendations. Every investment and trading step involves risk, and readers should conduct their own research when making their decision.
The views, ideas and opinions expressed herein are those of the author only and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cointelegraph.
Sandra Helou is the head of Metaverse and NFT at Zilliqa. With in-depth knowledge and a multidisciplinary background spanning both traditional and digital industries, Sandra leads Zilliqa’s NFT and Metaverse projects in growth, partnership, strategy, marketing and conceptualization. Her global experience in Australia, Asia, Europe and the Middle East allows her to deliver at the level of strategy and implementation. Sandra, a futuristic and action leader, is committed to enriching and innovating the economics of the creators, Web3 and MetaFi / NFT space.