Metaverse still popular with investors – 09/06/2022 – Tec

Metaverse still popular with investors – 09/06/2022 – Tec

Last month, I saw a friend for the first time since Q2 2019 before Covid. We celebrated on the patio of a restaurant in London’s West End, surrounded by customers eating steak and chips, before kicking off at the neighbouring theatre. With new friends arriving, the overwhelmed waiter quickly prepared a second table to join us, but he tripped over a bumpy tile and spilled wine on my pants.

If it wants to compete with this concrete fun and comedy of the real world — the combination of reunion heat and cold wine baths, plus salty laundry bills — the virtual world will have to take the plunge very hard. Controlled the $13 trillion economy that many had predicted for him. The current hype around new markets — at least for now — could prove to be a pandemic-related phenomenon.

That $13 trillion figure is the upper end of the hypothetical economic scope of a more broadly defined virtual world by the end of the decade, according to a report released this week by Citi Research. The term is used more and more frequently to encompass all future routes that the Internet and every company, institution and individual associated with it can cover. The manager of a large international investment fund told me that he liked the idea of ​​the Metaverse, but couldn’t point to a stock in his portfolio from a company that operates exclusively in the Metaverse.

Still, in the eight months since Facebook sparked widespread excitement by announcing a bet on the metaverse, which even included renaming it Meta, many similar predictions have appeared on fund managers’ desks. Inevitably, when an idea-hungry client asks them how best to handle it, the instinct of stock traders is to expand the metaverse-related company names as much as possible, so their reach has become astronomical and almost impossible. understand. . Right now, the best options in terms of investment seem to be those companies that use shovels and pickaxes (i.e. deal with digital infrastructure and hardware), and would theoretically build a platform on which the Metaverse’s user base would expand To billions, who knows? people. The corporate world (especially in Asia) has met these expectations with grand virtual world strategies that, in most cases, have so far cost close to zero and have not forced companies to make any commitments.

The complexity involved in defining a metaverse facilitates this scope expansion. Attendees at a global board meeting hosted by the Financial Times on Tuesday excelled as a prominent international panel of experts sought to tackle the challenge. But they recognize that the underlying story — the fusion of physical and digital life — is a mix between a real migration of work and leisure to the digital world (some already underway) and speculative fantasies. Remember, we’re talking about an investment theme that allowed JPMorgan to tell investors in January that “the next generation of financial firms may turn to digital clothing as collateral for underwriting land and real estate mortgages. Virtual”, no statement seems Totally ridiculous.

The Citi report, like other previous research, describes the metaverse as “a three-dimensional virtual space interoperable with the physical world, representing a step change from the current two-dimensional web-based internet content.”. Morgan Stanley expressed a narrow view of the “next generation of social media, streaming, gaming and shopping” platforms in a February report.

The internet is clearly entering a new phase where much of what we now think of as “online” will take the form of virtual worlds. Gaming, entertainment, and parts of the workplace will transition first, but technology will evolve to appeal to everything else, and ultimately, for companies, the risks of moving away from virtual worlds will outweigh the risks of joining.

But with all the hype about the $13 trillion market there is a serious timing issue. The concept of a metaverse and a unique transition to a new phase of the internet may have been around for a while, but the truly explosive speculation on the subject peaked at the world’s unique acceptance of the idea. Life. in the virtual world.

Facebook’s announcement in October and the events of the following months come at a time when much of the world is being forced to replace the norms of social world and work life with digital versions. At that moment, the prospect of finally breaking out of this stage appeared to be seriously threatened by the omicron variant. So this moment is particularly conducive to fostering the idea that this forced transition from the real world to the digital world is going to be a regular cycle, so that millions or even billions of people can very logically decide on the virtual world is a refuge. .

It’s not an inevitable conclusion that the world will emerge from the pandemic entirely, but those furthest toward a return to normalcy are a reminder that the real world – for all its glory and disaster – will always be an extremely difficult competitor For the world, the virtual world.

Paulo Migliacci Translation


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