Metaverse Technologies – the trends driving it

According to Marty Resnick, VP analyst at the 2022 Gartner IT Symposium, there are six major trends driving metaverse technologies over the next three to five years.

“Ultimately, the metaverse is going to provide innovative new opportunities, business models, new operating models allowing businesses to extend digital business to be persistent, decentralised, collaborative and interoperable,” Resnick said.

Those trends include;

Enterprises will adopt “serious games” — gaming technologies, experiences and storytelling for training and simulation of specific work tasks and functions. Gartner predicts that by 2025, the serious games market will grow by 25 percent due to the impact of metaverse technologies.

Digital Humans
Organisations are already planning on using digital humans to act as identified digital agents within metaverse environments for customer service, support, sales and other interactions with current and potential customers. Gartner predicts that by 2027, a majority of B2C enterprise CMOs will have a dedicated budget for digital humans in metaverse experiences.

Virtual Spaces
A virtual space, or world, is a computer-generated environment where groups of people can come together using personal avatars or holograms. Gartner predicts that by 2025, 10 percent of workers will regularly use virtual spaces (in activities such as sales, onboarding, remote teams), up from 1 percent in 2022.

Shared Experiences
The metaverse will move shared experiences out of siloed immersive applications and allow for more opportunities to meet, collaborate, interact, participate or otherwise share experiences across applications, consumer events and services. In this sense, the metaverse will democratise immersive experiences. By 2028, 10 percent of public events (such as sports and performing arts) will offer participation in the metaverse, fuelling rapid buildout of commercial metaverse shared experiences, according to Gartner.

Spatial Computing
Spatial computing combines physical and digital objects to digitally enhance physical spaces. This allows organisations to get more out of physical and digital assets by surfacing related, “unseen” digital information and content anchored to people, places and things. Gartner predicts that by 2026, the second and third iterations of spatial computing glasses will arrive, creating a more pervasive metaverse experience connected to the physical world.

Tokenised Assets
In metaverse experiences, most tokenised assets will use non-fungible token technologies (NFTs). NFTs support new economic models, for example, where content creators perpetually retain most of the revenue from sales of their works. Gartner predicts that by 2027, 25 percent of retail organisations with an e-commerce presence will have completed at least one proof of concept for tokenised assets using metaverse technologies.

Resnick believes that while widescale adoption of metaverse technologies is more than 10 years away, there are practical ways organisations are harnessing them now, for example, in employee onboarding, sales enablement, higher education, medical and military training and immersive shopping experiences.

“Today, emergent metaverses are in their infancy. But technology trends, with proven use cases and business outcomes, are just the beginning of the value technology innovation brings to the enterprise,” Resnick said.

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