The second half of 2021 was bombarded with launches, announcements and even re-branding of the metaverse. From social media giant Facebook becoming Meta to gaming companies announcing their works on metaverse since the last few years, people only became more confident of the immersive future being here soon.
According to a report by Emergen Research, the global metaverse market size was at USD 47.69 Billion in 2020 and is expected to register a revenue CAGR of 43.3% by 2028.
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Metaverse broadly refers to using immersive technologies to form a shared virtual platform that can be accessed through multiple devices, where people can move within digital environments.
Here are some of the top announcements around metaverse in 2021:
In October, at the Connect 2021, Mark Zuckerberg introduced Meta that brought together their apps and technologies under one brand name. He also announced that Meta’s focus would be to bring the metaverse. The company announced an investment of as much as USD 10 billion and also decided to hire 10,000 employees in Europe to build the immersive experience.
The detailed 1-hour explanation of the metaverse suggested that the company will build the technology for gaming, social communication, and even work.
The Gaming company Roblox went public in March and ended its first trading session with USD 38 billion market cap. This happened as the company announced their plans to build metaverse as its long-term plan, where over a million people can connect to play games, attend meetings, and even collaborate on work.
While many companies announced ‘plans’ of the metaverse, in November, Microsoft unveiled a solution called Mesh for Microsoft Teams which will be available in 2022. Mesh for Teams will be accessible to anyone with a standard smartphone, laptop, desktop or VR headset. At its core, the solution is designed for work where online meetings become more engaging and personal.
In October, NVIDIA showcased its plans where enterprises can jump into the virtual world that enables life-like simulations and engaging avatars. The chipmaker announced their Omniverse on the first day of NVIDIA’s fall Graphics Technology Conference (GTC) 2021. The Omniverse will extend workflows into the virtual sphere and simulate digital twins of plants and factories, warehouses, robots, the 5G edge, self-driving cars, and avatars. The currently available open beta of Omniverse follows a yearlong early access program where Foster + Partners, Ericsson, ILM and over 40 other companies, 400 individual creators and developers have evaluated the platform and are providing feedback to NVIDIA.
In April, Epic Games announced the completion of a USD 1 billion round of funding that took the company’s equity valuation to USD 28.7 billion. At the occasion, Tim Sweeney, CEO and Founder, Epic Games, announced their metaverse plans. He said, “We are grateful to our new and existing investors who support our vision for Epic and the Metaverse.” The company plans to invest in building ‘connected social experiences’ in Rocket League, Fortnite, and Fall Guys.
During their earnings call in November, Pony Ma, CEO, Tencent for the first time, unveiled the firm’s considerations on metaverse. Ma explained that their idea of metaverse was that anything that made the virtual world more real and made virtual experiences richer became the metaverse. The executives announced that the company will build “pathways” to reach the metaverse.