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The Metaverse: Evolution, Revolution, Or Both?

1 min read · 927 views Bong-Geun Choi Jun 05, 2023

Recent news articles have screamed, “the metaverse is dead.”[1]  Meta’s recent focus on artificial intelligence (AI) is fueling rumors that it has abandoned its metaverse aspirations.[2]  However, we believe that the recent negative sentiment surrounding the metaverse is the result of misplaced expectations.  While the metaverse has the potential to be revolutionary, its build-out and adoption is likely to be evolutionary.

 

We also believe that the metaverse does not have a definitive moment when all of a sudden, it’s up and running.  The metaverse is “now,” and we are already employing metaverse technology. Companies are already looking at how to employ metaverse technology.  Additionally, technology will likely advance to create a more immersive individual experience.

 

Technology Is Usually Evolutionary

Mobile technology, e.g., the smartphone or tablets, gives users the capability to access great amounts of information via devices as small as their hands. This technology is quite revolutionary when compared to technology 50 years ago.  Yet, this revolution was not instantaneous.  Remember, mainframes and PCs were the predecessors to current mobile technology. 

 

Likewise, technology will continue to evolve to create a more immersive metaverse experience.

 

Metaverse – Revolutionary Potential or the Next Iteration of the Internet?

We would say both.

 

While the internet is essentially a 2-D experience, the metaverse offers the potential for a fully immersive, 3-D environment in which individuals may interact in virtual worlds.  It also has the potential to revolutionize how companies interact and do business with other companies and consumers.

 

The Metaverse Is Already Here

Critics of the metaverse may fail to understand that is it already here. Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) technologies currently exist.  Gaming is a prime example of VR technology in action, as many games are currently played in immersive 3-D environments.

 

Many companies are already deploying metaverse strategies.  Retail companies are creating virtual stores where consumers may browse and try on items.  Concerts have been performed in the metaverse.  Even governments are creating virtual town halls.

 

Technology Enabling Metaverse Evolution

Technologies such as blockchain, Web3, and AI are enabling current metaverse applications.  Continued advancement in technology, including smaller and more comfortable VR headsets with greater functionality, will likely foster greater adoption of metaverse technologies.

 

Offering a Potentially Attractive Investment Opportunity

The metaverse may create a potentially attractive investment opportunity for individuals.  Morgan Stanley estimates that the metaverse, particularly advertising and e-commerce in the metaverse, represents an $8.3 trillion opportunity to monetize U.S. consumer spending on activities including gaming, music, apparel, and real estate. Additional applications, including virtual entertainment, may offer an additional $5 trillion opportunity.[3]

 

The Metaverse – An Evolutionary Revolution

We believe that current metaverse technology will continue to advance, creating a evolution that will, in retrospect, revolutionize how business is done globally.


 


[1] Gosh, Sanchari, Metaverse Is Dead! But, Why Hasn’t Market Zuckerberg Announced It Yet?, Mint, 3/3/23

[2] Olinga, Luc, Mark Zuckerberg Quietly Buries the Metaverse, The Street, 3/2/23

[3] Metaverse: More Evolutionary Than Revolutionary, Morgan Stanley, 2/23/22


 

Bong-Geun Choi

Chief Economist

bchoi@fountinvestment.com

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Risk Disclosure:

 

Investing involves risk, including possible loss of principal. There is no guarantee the Funds will achieve their stated objectives. In addition to the normal risks associated with investing, international investments may involve the risk of capital loss from unfavorable fluctuation in currency values, differences in generally accepted accounting principles, or social, economic, or political instability in other nations. Emerging markets involve heightened risks related to the same factors, as well as increased volatility and lower trading volume. 

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