What is the metaverse, exactly?

 Tags: innovation

The metaverse is a hot topic of conversation right now. But do you know what it is, exactly, and all the opportunities it brings with it? In this post, we’ll give you a definition as well as some examples of how the platform is already being used. 

Writer Neal Stephenson coined the term ‘metaverse’ in his 1992 science fiction novel Snow Crash, in which human avatars met in realistic 3D buildings and other virtual reality settings.

Since then, various developments have paved the way towards the creation of a metaverse: an online world that brings together augmented reality, virtual reality, holographic 3D avatars, video and other means of communication. The inception of a metaverse can currently be seen in online gaming worlds, such as Fortnite, Minecraft and Roblox, among others. The companies behind these games intend to be part of the evolution of the metaverse. 


Definition and applications of the metaverse

The metaverse combines multiple technologies including virtual reality, augmented reality and video to create a space where users “live” inside a digital world. Supporters of the metaverse imagine users working, playing and connecting with others in situations ranging from concerts and conferences to virtual journeys around the world. Simply put, the metaverse is the next iteration of the internet.

virtual metaverse


So now you know what the metaverse is, you’re probably wondering when you’re going to be able to use it. Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Meta (formerly Facebook), thinks it could be five to ten years before the key features of the metaverse become commonplace. Even so, a number of aspects of the metaverse are already here. Super fast broadband, virtual reality headsets and persistent online worlds are already a reality, though they may not yet be accessible to everyone. 


A look at the metaverse today 



The technology giant that was until recently known as Facebook has already heavily invested in virtual reality, acquiring Oculus in 2014, for instance. Meta imagines a virtual world in which digital avatars connect for work, experiences and entertainment using VR headsets. Zuckerberg is optimistic about the metaverse, believing it could replace the Internet as we know it today. “The next platform will be even more immersive - an embodied internet where you’re in the experience, not just looking at it. We call this the metaverse, and it will touch every product we build.”



The software giant already uses holograms and is developing mixed and extended reality (XR) applications on Microsoft Mesh, a platform that combines the real world and augmented and virtual reality. The US army is currently working with Microsoft to create HoloLens 2, augmented reality smartglasses that will be used to train soldiers. Xbox Live is another technology that millions of gamers connect to from around the world. 


Epic Games

metaverso video games


Sweeney, executive director of the company that developed Fornite said: “it’s no secret that Epic is investing in building the metaverse”. It has put on large-scale concerts featuring Ariana Grande and Travis Scott, film previews, musical debuts and even an immersive enactment of Martin Luther King Jr.’s historic speech, I have a dream. And if all that weren’t enough, it’s developing photorealistic digital humans with MetaHuman Creator, which could just be the way you’ll build your digital doppelganger in the future. 


Although it’s still being developed, the metaverse is already a reality. The technology promises all sorts of ways to help us be more efficient at work and will certainly offer a plethora of applications in the MICE sector. Can you imagine using the technologies we’ve talked about in your events? The industry is undergoing a drastic technological transformation so together let’s keep up with all the advances to make the most of the benefits. 

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