19 November , 2021
[Hye-Tak Seok’s Economic Talk] The Metaverse Is Already Breathing With Us
Photo caption: Neil Stevenson’s 1992 science fiction novel Snow Crash was
the first to mention the metaverse, which has even been considered
the next version of the Internet.
The metaverse is coming
By Hye-tak Seok
SEOUL: This is a message from Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang. He predicted that the next 20 years would be like science fiction. About 30 years ago, a certain ‘sci-fi novel’ exquisitely predicted the present world.
Photo caption: “Snow Crash” by Neil Stevenson
This is the book <Snow Crash>, published in 1992 by Neil Stevenson. “Metaverse”, which has been evaluated as the next version of the Internet, is also mentioned for the first time in this novel.
Photo caption: Google co-founder Sergey Brin
Google co-founder Sergey Brin was also inspired by this book to develop ‘Google Earth’, a satellite image map service. ‘Fantasy’ became the source of technological progress.
“Metaverse” is a combination of “meta” meaning transcendence and “universe” meaning universe and world. Multiple layers of interpretation are possible, such as the coexistence of reality and unreality, a three-dimensional virtual world, and the expansion of virtual reality. It can be further subdivided into life logging, virtual worlds, augmented reality, mirror worlds, etc.
Metaverse’s official affiliated convenience store, ‘CU Zepetto Hangang Branch’
Like the virtual world ‘OASIS’ in Steven Spielberg’s <Ready Player One>, the metaverse is a dematerialized world with infinite possibilities. In <Snow Crash>, the protagonist, Hiro Protagonist, delivers pizza in real life, but is a hacker and swordsman in the metaverse.
As his name suggests, he is a protagonist against an antagonist. In the metaverse, we can live anew as a variety of “multi-personas” that we could not even imagine in reality. In Korean, this phenomenon is often described with the term “bukae(side character)”. It is to acquire two or more identities through “bukae”.
Lil Nax X, an American rapper who has caused a lot of talk and controversy, held a splendid concert on the metaverse platform ‘Roblox’. He captivated 36 million spectators based on the number of viewers. It was a great success. The power of Roblox, which is signed up by a majority of American youth under the age of 16, is formidable. The average daily number of users reached 42 million, and sales exceeded KRW 1 trillion last year. This year, Roblox was recognized for a market value of more than 40 trillion won. Each user who accesses Roblox will become a core customer that companies must thoroughly target.
Photo caption: Metaverse’s official affiliated convenience store, ‘CU Zepetto Hangang Branch’
Naver Z’s metaverse platform, Zepeto, has a Gucci store and an election camp for influential politicians. Convenience stores are also open. It is ‘CU Zepeto Han River Branch’. It is the world’s first official Metaverse affiliated convenience store. It took only 4 months to develop. Since there is no actual construction cost, various types of space can be created in Zepeto in the future.
About 80% of users of this interesting platform are teenagers. Enjoying access to Zepeto from an early age can naturally lead to familiarity and affection for certain brands within Zepeto.
The size of the metaverse market is estimated to exceed $1.5 trillion by 2030 (PwC survey). This is more than 1,770 trillion won in Korean Won. What will shopping, entertainment, and leisure life look like in an era when the metaverse becomes the mainstream? How will we communicate with various avatars through devices such as AR glasses or tablets?
It requires intense thought. You should be able to maintain your opinion on the metaverse as well. Companies will need to devise a marketing strategy that can organically link consumption behavior between virtual and real.
The metaverse is coming. No, the metaverse is already breathing with us.
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