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The Metaverse, as a technological concept, is not new; it has been around for a while. In recent times, it has witnessed tremendous growth, thanks to certain recent advancements in technology, particularly Blockchain, 5G and Extended Reality. In fact, it is this impressive growth that has resulted in the development of numerous exceptional Metaverse platforms, such as Decentraland and The Sandbox. Most of these platforms are in the preliminary stage of their evolution. If things progress at this pace, in near future these platforms will create a strong impact in several prime areas. Anyway, at this point of time, definitely, the future of Metaverse Platforms seems extremely bright.
A Metaverse platform is a dynamic 3D environment for socialising, working, shopping and various activities.Metaverse platforms come in two types: Traditional Centralised and Decentralised Blockchain.Leading Metaverse platforms in 2023 include Decentraland, The Sandbox, Roblox, Upland, and Axie Infinity.Future Metaverse influencers comprise Google Starline, Microsoft Mesh, Meta Horizon Worlds, and Epic Games.
1. Metaverse Platforms: An Introduction
Imagine you are in an interactive 3D space, and here you can interact, work, shop and engage in various activities. This is exactly what a Metaverse platform generally offers.
1.1. The Metaverse: A Short Definition
For a better understanding, let’s try to understand the concept, at first. In simple terms, the Metaverse is a vast, interconnected digital world. This futuristic concept attempts to redefine how you meet, work, shop and engage in various activities.
|What? Is This True?
In January 2023, a staggering 1.9 million global searches were made for the term ‘metaverse,’ according to Google. This surge in curiosity reflects the growing fascination with this digital frontier, as people seek to explore and understand the evolving landscape of the Metaverse.
1.2. What Is A Metaverse Platform
Generally, a Metaverse platform is a highly interactive 3D environment, where users can meet, work, shop and engage in activities. There are numerous Metaverse platforms. Each has its own characteristics. For instance, the Sandbox provides unique 3D development tools, which allows users to create their own content.
1.3. Different Metaverse Platforms: Two Prime Types
Primarily, there are two types of Metaverse platforms: Traditional Centralised Metaverse and Decentralised Blockchain Metaverse.
1.3.1. Traditional Centralised Metaverse
Traditional Centralised Metaverses, exemplified by games like GTA 5 and Roblox, operate without Blockchain integration. They have been around for some time. And, they are known for their impressive user bases. Importantly, these Metaverses are managed by a central authority, which maintains control over the virtual world’s rules, assets, and user interactions. Their prime downside is limited user autonomy.
1.3.2. Decentralised Blockchain Metaverse
What Decentralised Blockchain Metaverse actually represents is a groundbreaking shift. Like what the title clearly indicates, they employ blockchain technology and smart contracts. This means they provide a solution for the major downside of Traditional Centralised Metaverse. In these platforms, users participate in decision-making processes, including establishing rules. In short, these Metaverses empower users to actively shape their virtual experiences. In simple terms, they advocate user control and autonomy over centralised control.
2. Top Metaverse Platforms in 2023
In a general perception, Decentraland, The Sandbox, Roblox, Upland and Axie Infinity are the five top Metaverse platforms.
Founded in 2015 by Ariel Meilich and Esteban Ordano, Decentraland is a pioneering 3D virtual world on the Ethereum blockchain. Operating under a decentralised autonomous organisation, it employs the ERC-20 token standard for its native currency, MANA. The platform also utilises two other tokens, LAND and Estate, for land ownership. MANA enables land trading, exploration, and various activities, including virtual events. In short, this unique digital realm empowers users to own, develop, and socialise within a virtual landscape.
2.2. The Sandbox
Built on Ethereum, The Sandbox is a metaverse platform where users can craft their virtual experiences, games and worlds using a creative toolkit and monetise them through NFTs. This platform enables secure, decentralised trading of virtual assets and real estate. It is known for the impressive community support it enjoys. Interestingly, it boasts partnerships with notable entities like Atari, Binance, and Square Enix.
Popular for its kid-friendly environment, Roblex is an extremely popular Metaverse platform, which promotes creativity and social interaction. It is extremely popular among childrens and parents. Actually, it was during the pandemic that Roblex gained popularity and acceptance. At the time the opportunity for social interactions were limited, the platform played a crucial role in facilitating social connections. It hosts user-created games and experiences, allowing users to earn its digital currency, Robux, by selling avatar customisations and NFTs. Even companies like Hyundai and Nike have utilised Roblox in order to engage effectively with a younger demographic.
Launched in the EOS blockchain in early 2020, Upland is an online real estate marketplace and blockchain-based play-to-earn game. In this platform, users engage in activities like treasure hunts, social interactions, and the acquisition of NFT representations of real estate properties. These NFTs can be converted into real US dollars through Tilia Pay, a platform that supports PayPal transactions. Notably, Upland’s prime goal is to establish a Metaverse featuring virtual renditions of real-world addresses, currently encompassing over 20 US cities such as New York City, San Francisco and Detroit.
2.5. Axie Infinity
Inspired by popular Japanese titles like Pokemon and Tamagotchi, Axie Infinity, a platform operating on Ethereum, is a blockchain-based play-to-earn game, which uses NFTs to represent in-game assets, characters and land plots. Axie Infinity Shards is the native token of this platform; it empowers users by enabling actions like breeding, battling, land acquisition and governance participation through staking for rewards.
|Hey! There’s Something You Must Know
The Metaverse boasts over 500 million monthly active users, with a significant portion being tech-savvy teenagers. Among 12- to 13-year-olds, games like Roblox, Fortnite and Minecraft are the stars, offering immersive virtual adventures and creative playgrounds in this digital realm.
3. Metaverse Platforms You Should Know For The Future
In the future, a few specific Metaverse platforms have the potential to create a significant impact. Google Starline, Microsoft Mesh, Meta Horizon Worlds and Epic Games are the prominent ones among the list of the platforms capable of rewriting the destiny of the Metaverse in future.
3.1. Google Starline
It aims to facilitate real-time, 3D communication across distances by employing advanced technologies such as computer vision, machine learning and spatial audio technologies. It creates an immersive, shared experience similar to being in the same room. This system uses cameras, microphones, and displays within specialised booths.
3.2. Microsoft Mesh
It is a platform created by Microsoft for collaborative mixed reality experiences. Users can connect across devices and locations to interact with virtual and augmented reality environments and digital content. Its prime features include multi-device and platform compatibility, spanning VR headsets, smartphones and PCs. This mainly fosters collaboration.
3.3. Meta Horizon Worlds
It is a virtual platform, which offers a decentralised and immersive online experience using blockchain technology. The platform, which is built on Ethereum, allows users to own, trade virtual assets and real estate, and interact in a shared virtual space. It focuses on user-generated content so it encourages users to craft and share their unique experiences.
3.4. Epic Games
Famous for popular titles like Fortnite, Epic Games aims to build a social and gaming platform uniting players across diverse virtual worlds. Its prime intention is to create an interactive Metaverse where users can socialise and play. Notably, they are developing innovative, as well as creative, tools like MetaHuman Creator for lifelike, customisable avatars to enrich the Metaverse experience.
In summary, the Metaverse landscape in 2023 is dominated by Decentraland, The Sandbox, Roblox, Upland and Axie Infinity. These platforms have redefined digital interaction and ownership. Look ahead, Google Starline, Microsoft Mesh, Meta Horizon Worlds and Epic Games hold the potential to reshape the Metaverse, ushering in a new era of immersive experiences, social connectivity, and technological innovation. As the Metaverse continues to evolve, these platforms will play an important role in shaping its future, offering exceptional possibilities for users and developers alike.
A Metaverse platform is a digital space where users interact, create, and socialise in a virtual world.
Decentraland, The Sandbox, Roblox, Upland, and Axie Infinity are among the top Metaverse platforms.
You can earn in the Metaverse by creating and selling virtual assets, participating in virtual economies, and offering services or experiences.
Yes, Metaverse platforms prioritise user safety through moderation and privacy settings.
The Metaverse is evolving rapidly, with potential developments including enhanced interactivity, expanded virtual economies, and new forms of digital experiences.