Fri. Jul 1st, 2022

A lot of hype, misunderstanding, and incorrect information have surrounded the upcoming metaverse. If you’re into technology, you’ll love the metaverse because it allows you to be anywhere in the digital world and be a part of anything real – even if you’re thousands of miles away from the place where you’re supposed to be.

Neuronal interfaces and electromyography (EMG) movements will allow you to control devices, communicate, and collaborate almost as easily as thinking in the future. Glasses equipped with sensors that allow you to see both the real and virtual worlds will allow you to do so.

Augmented Reality (AR) glasses

The apparent sci-fi world we live in has elements that are closer than we think. In a series of articles published last year, venture capitalist Matthew Ball predicted where the metaverse would be in ten years. In order to build the metaverse, various technologies and protocols must come together.

In contrast to Ball’s long-term vision, this article focuses on the next two or three years of the metaverse. Here we’ll take a look at what most business decision makers need to know, regardless of whether they work in gaming (where the metaverse has taken on its most immersive form to date) or in business (where the metaverse is just getting started).

Over the next 12 to 24 months, “mixed reality” hardware is expected to produce major breakthroughs in immersive experiences.

There will be a second wave of augmented reality (AR) glasses in the next three or more years when they become more widely available. As a gateway to the metaverse, this hardware is critical.

Some of the more intriguing aspects of the metaverse, like having your personal avatar appear as a hologram to someone else in their physical reality, may be more science fiction than reality at this point. It won’t happen in the next three years at the most.

Facebook has shown off a realistic-looking avatar that includes pores

Technology and social forces are converging to propel this revolution forward, according to experts, including the emergence of 5G networks, the need for more intense virtual collaboration accelerated by COVID-19, the rise of edge computing (which allows for more ambient intelligence), and advancements in AI, AR and VR. Metaverse is the biggest technological revolution since smartphones 15 years ago, especially when you factor in blockchain and NFTs (non-fungible tokens).

The gaming industry has already been impacted by the metaverse’s foundations, as this is where virtual experiences have been the most immersive to date. Even in gaming, where virtual interaction and things like NFTs and cryptocurrencies are creating a creator and gamer economy that hasn’t yet affected the enterprise, there is almost a separate conversation taking place.

The legal battle between Apple and Epic, a game developer that needs access to the iPhone’s app store but refuses to pay Apple’s 30 percent tax, shows that bitter rivalries exist in the gaming industry. Many gamers aspire to be able to take their gaming profile with them wherever they go, thanks to an interconnected network of always-on 3D virtual worlds. However, this is unlikely to occur in the near future due to the fact that different companies own virtual spaces. Another reason is because it fails to capture the true scope of the metaverse’s potential to reshape virtually every sector of the economy.

While it is impossible to predict exactly what the metaverse will look like in the future, the seeds are being sown today. It’s best to look at the industry players who have been working on building the metaverse for enterprise applications the longest in order to see where the metaverse is headed in 2022-2025. Starting with the biggest players is a logical strategy because they have the most resources. When it comes to virtual native gaming companies like Roblox or Epic Games or Nvidia or Qualcomm, these are the companies that are making the most money, as well as the ones that are making the most money in the short term.

Using Google’s metaverse, the Glasses

In 2012, Google, a company well-known for its big-picture thinking, became the first to demonstrate augmented reality glasses. Glasses had a small screen on the right side of your vision that streamed information from your phone via Wi-Fi or Bluetooth connections. There were numerous issues that led to Google’s first attempt failing.

Enterprise Edition 2 of Glass

Google, on the other hand, hasn’t slowed down. Enterprise versions are in the works. In 2013, it released Glass Enterprise Edition, a hands-free version of the company’s enterprise glasses that had been in development for the previous three years. It has gained traction in a handful of industries, such as logistics, manufacturing, and collaboration, where a worker can stream what they are seeing via their glasses to someone watching along. Sutter Health, DHL, and AGCO are just some of the companies that are using Google Glass.

Glasses can funnel information from the web—including images of your friends or colleagues or anything else—to create an alternate reality that is layered on top of your physical reality. This vision is shared by many leading tech companies. With Google Meet on the glasses and the Bluejeans partnership with Verizon, conference calls can now be held on the glasses as well.

Google declined to comment for this storey because it is keeping a tight lid on its ultimate metaverse plans and vision.

Project Iris, Google’s new virtual reality headset, has been rumoured to be in the works for some time. According to two anonymous sources cited by The Verge, shipments of the head-mounted display will begin in 2024. It will have cameras that face outward, and a video feed that incorporates augmented reality.

Another indication that Google takes the metaverse seriously. North, an AR startup founded by Intel employees, was acquired by the company last year. Intel had previously purchased the assets of the project. Despite its impressive light field display technology, which allows 3D, lifelike holograms of people to appear in front of you, it is currently too complicated and expensive to be widely adopted for everyday use, Project Starline was revealed in May of last year. All of the metaverse-related projects were moved to Google Labs in November under the leadership of Clay Bavor, who reports directly to Pichai.

However, augmented reality glasses are not a panacea for the metaverse

Despite this, AR glasses for the enterprise metaverse are promising, but they have a number of drawbacks. AR information or images need to remain in front of your pupil, but your pupil moves depending on what you’re looking at, making it difficult to get the lighting just right. It’s also difficult to achieve proper depth and focus. Aside from that, you’ll need to keep the augmenting screen in a small area of your field of vision. And you can only do so much with your eyes: you still have to control inputs, and using your phone or your hands to do so is cumbersome.

Nikhil Balram, who was in charge of Google’s augmented reality hardware at the end of 2019, left the company to join EyeWay Vision, an augmented reality glasses startup. While summarising the difficulties of AR, he also identifies the “holy grail” of fully realised AR goggles, which is reducing power consumption.

Balram claims that AR goggles will use a lot of electricity to power what amounts to a mini-supercomputer. When it comes to battery packs, people don’t want to wear a large battery pack on their head or near their face. According to Balram, Apple is the most likely company to succeed in this endeavour. Apple could design a snap-on, snap-off power source that appeals to consumers by leveraging its design prowess.

Maximalism is at the heart of Meta’s mission

Facebook, on the other hand, represents the complete polar opposite of Google’s cautious and laser-like focus on glasses use cases. AR and VR are just two of the areas in which it plans to make significant investments over the next few years ($10 billion in total by 2021). As part of this new focus, Zuckerberg even renamed the company. “Bring the metaverse to life” is the company’s new north star, he said.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Meta’s team have created a movie version of Matthew Ball’s foundational screed for the metaverse—a 1hr and 17min presentation of the technologies Meta sees as part of the metaverse. Other tech giants, such as Google, Microsoft, and Apple, are vying for a piece of the action as well.

Meta emphasises that it wants to immerse you in other worlds rather than simply enhance your own. The concept of “embodiment” is central to Zuckerberg’s vision of the metaverse. Rather than merely taking in information, you are immersed in it, as he explains. “You feel like you’re in the same room as everyone else, even though you’re miles apart.” It doesn’t necessarily have to be 3D. A 3D concert, for example, could be accessed through a smartphone app, which would allow you to switch between 2D and 3D elements.

As a result, Facebook is hard at work developing a wide range of connective technology to hedge its bets. Virtual reality is supported by the Quest headset. If you’re looking for a place to hang out with your friends and coworkers while you’re in the middle of a project, then Horizon is the social VR platform you’ve been looking for (which lets you hang out with up to 20 people at a time in a virtual space, and write code to build things like games in a Minecraft-like environment).

Additionally, Meta is working on the Project Cambria MR headset that will be available later this year. Mixing virtual reality with your real-world environment is what gives this technology its name.

An early version of Facebook’s full-scale AR glasses prototype

This includes “hologram displays, projectors,” “battery radios,” “custom silicon chips,” and “cameras and speakers to map the world around you,” as well as a pair of AR glasses called Project Nazare. A “supercomputer in a pair of glasses” is what Zuckerberg envisions.

For now, the company is focusing on virtual reality, but in the future, Meta plans to release an MR headset, followed by augmented reality glasses. There is no doubt that Facebook, Google, and others are all racing toward the same goal: immersive AR glasses. Zuckerberg says virtual reality is critical because it “delivers the clearest form of presence,” whereas Google has been reluctant to invest in VR.

By Adam

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