Meta, the parent company of Facebook and Instagram, has once again reiterated its belief in the potential of the metaverse as the next big thing in computing.
In a virtual press conference held on Wednesday, Nick Clegg, the ex-Liberal Democrat leader turned head of global affairs for Meta, spoke from a virtual space in the company’s Horizon Workrooms to a group of reporters wearing Meta Quest headsets in Washington.
While acknowledging the current limitations and clunky nature of today’s metaverse applications, Clegg expressed confidence that the future will bring a more user-friendly and immersive experience.
“We’re going to stick with it, because we really believe, all the early evidence suggests, that something like this will be the heart of the new computing platform. But it’s going to take a while,” said Clegg.
While many others in the tech world appear to have lost interest in the metaverse, Clegg remains fiercely committed.
Despite the shift in industry focus towards AI and the emergence of a start-up sector around it, Clegg insists the future of computing lies in virtual realities.
However, with tighter economic conditions driving the need to prioritize resource allocation, a number of tech companies have scaled back their investments in virtual experiences, marking a stark contrast to Clegg’s enthusiasm.
Advertising and commerce in the metaverse
Clegg outlined two key strategies for monetizing the company’s investment in virtual worlds: advertising and commerce
While Meta’s success with Facebook and Instagram is attributed to its ability to target specific ads using user data, it remains uncertain whether consumers will be willing to invest in virtual goods or use VR for shopping purposes.
According to Clegg, while some communities such as gaming and fitness have readily embraced virtual worlds, there is still vast untapped potential for its use in other areas like education and healthcare.
At an event hosted by Colorintech @Meta in London
Nick Clegg up to explain the question we're all dying to know the answer to: what is the metaverse? pic.twitter.com/vVa097XlOq
— Ryan Browne (@Ryan_Browne_) March 28, 2023
“I just really want to stress that we’re going to look back on the headware we’re wearing now and think, ‘Gosh, do you remember the days when you would wear a Quest Pro?’
“We’ve always been very clear that we’re in this for the long haul. This is not going to happen overnight,” added Clegg.
The former politician stressed the importance of involving researchers, civil organizations, and other companies in the development of the metaverse to create a more immersive and enjoyable experience.
In other metaverse news, the Dubai International Arbitration Centre (DIAC) recently unveiled its metaverse for dispute resolution. The virtual reality platform enables parties to engage in dispute resolution proceedings from any location worldwide, reported the Khaleej Times.
By eliminating the requirement for physical transportation, the platform reinforces the eco-friendliness and sustainability of arbitration. DIAC can now provide alternative dispute resolution services that are even more effective and accessible than before.
“The launch of DIAC’s metaverse is the result of months of hard work and dedication from the team,” said Dr. Tariq Humaid Al Tayer, Chairman of DIAC.
This offering aligns with Dubai’s objective to become a global hub for the metaverse and strengthens DIAC’s position as the top international arbitration center, explained Al Tayer.
What do you think of Clegg’s metaverse bullishness? Is it genuine or is he paying lip service to his Meta paymasters? Have your say by dropping a comment on Twitter.