Recently, everyone has heard the relatively new word "metaverses". Especially interest in the phenomenon increased after the presentation of Mark Zuckerberg. Already today, pioneers have begun to make money on the metaverse, and companies are working on the transition to new virtual worlds.
So what is the metaverse and how do you make money in the metaverse? These and many other questions are answered today by 2 people who have got really good insights about the Metaverse and they are:
The organizer of MIXR, conferences on neurotechnology and Metaverse.
Founder of Themm Media, an online publication about the metaverse.
What is the metaverse and how will it change the internet?
Andrey Ivashentsev: There is no single answer to this question. The term was first used by Neil Stevenson in his novel Snow Crash, where he described the concept of a virtual world in which people spend most of their lives. Now the term is actively included in our lives thanks to Facebook, which recently became Meta.
The main idea of Mark Zuckerberg is that the company is transforming around the goal “To create a new generation of immersive social network that will replace the Internet we are used to”. Almost everything that we do on the web today, looking at the screen of a mobile or desktop device, we will do in a virtual three-dimensional environment, which is already being created in the company today.
Anton Zanimonets: Metaverse is a collective word that is used to describe the new version of the Internet, the so-called Web 3.0. The metaverse is an analogue of the physical world with all its possibilities but in virtual reality.
What is the difference? In Web 1.0 you can only receive value, in Web 2.0 you can receive and share, in Web 3.0 you can receive, share and own value.
The possession of information, which became possible thanks to the blockchain, became known as NFT.
From here, we can define that:
Conventionally, the metaverse market can be divided into virtual worlds (Decentraland, Sanbox, etc.), games and gaming companies (Roblox, Axie Infinity), and NFT (collectibles, digital art, etc.).
How soon will the metaverse be operational in practice?
Andrey Ivashentsev: In fact, it’s already working. Already today, for a huge number of people, digital achievements and social networks have become more important than everyday and everyday life, and how a person looks in a photo on Instagram is more important than how he looks in real life. The development of technology will make the virtual world even more attractive.
If we talk exclusively about the technological component, then I expect that next year we will see how "Horizon Worlds" from Meta (Facebook) walks around the world, inside which it will already be possible to try almost everything that the world expects from the metauniverses.
This, of course, will not yet be "Oasis" from the movie "Ready Player One," but the first step in that direction.
Anton Zanimonets: They are already working, we just do not realize it. We look at 3D avatars, thinking that the future is somewhere far away. However, each of us already has our own avatar on Facebook, Telegram, and we are so used to them that we associate the pixel picture with our personality, although this is not at all the case. Your avatar lives its own life online.
The transition to more advanced versions will occur cyclically — a technological breakthrough, a wave of public attention (hype), adaptation of technology to an audience, filtering out the garbage (correction) and entering a new cycle.
People are discovering America by taking up empty space in virtual reality. The population of the earth is growing, the resources are limited, the ecology is rapidly deteriorating — isn't all this a reason to move to the metaverse, where you can earn money, communicate, relax and leave our planet finally alone?
How many users can reach the metaverse in the next few years?
Andrey Ivashentsev: It will be possible to touch the metauniverses from almost any device, otherwise the phenomenon will not become widespread — everything is about the same as with the Internet. You just have to imagine that the concept of the Internet is changing from two-dimensional to three-dimensional. We are talking about billions of people who own modern gadgets, but only owners of VR helmets and AR glasses will be able to immerse themselves in the immersive experiences of the metaverse.
Today, the penetration of VR headsets is already measured in tens of millions of devices and these numbers are finally growing every day. Along with them is the growing amount of interesting content that developers are creating for this new market.
Anton Zanimonets: I believe that the main case through which the metaverse will expand is games. However, there is a certain philosophical problem in this. What are the practical benefits of games? What is their value? Just a pleasure? — It is difficult to answer unequivocally.
All people play games using abstract conventional concepts: money, laws, companies. All this exists only in our heads. But a person is programmed so that the game is something native, natural for him, and at the moment there are about 3.2 billion gamers on the planet.
These are people who already live in the metaverse and if they are given the opportunity to earn money there, then we will completely immerse ourselves in the virtual world.
Axie Infinity is an incredible case for using the Play-2-Earn mode. The revenue of this young company has already exceeded 1 billion dollars. In the Philippines, the concept of "metaverse worker" even appeared, which refers to the professional player Axie. These are people who refuse to ruin their health in Chinese factories and choose to mine and play games. They are earning $ 200-400 per month, which is comparable to a salary in a physical company in the Phillippines.
How can you make money in the metaverse?
Andrey Ivashentsev: This is probably the most interesting question of tomorrow. Metaverse is the concept of an information universe that is decentralized. Therefore, everyone who wants to participate in its creation can start trying today. After all, tomorrow the world will need specialists who can create virtual worlds, multiplayer immersive games, and many other interesting user experiences.
Once upon a time, people looked with suspicion at programmers, web designers, and online marketing specialists. Today these are completely routine working specialties that do not surprise anyone at all.
As far as business is concerned, it will be possible within the framework of some established economy. On the modern internet, it is rather a variant of some services and online stores, which each operate in their own jurisdiction. The big questions are will Meta have its own jurisdiction with its own economy, currency (for example, Libra)?
Of course, all this will be - and shops in virtual reality, and virtual cinemas with movie tickets, and almost everything that you can imagine today. If something has value in the metaverse (and indeed in reality), you can do business on it. The only question is — by what rules?
Anton Zanimonets: The main difference between the metaverse and simple entertainment is that everything is tied to money. As mentioned above, the metaverse is a copy of the physical world, so all the opportunities for earning in it associated with intellectual production are possible in the virtual one:
All this has one thing in common — transactions between the seller and the buyer are made directly, between them there is no intermediary with his own interests. Instead of imperfect laws, rights are protected by inexorable technology.
What is the potential for info business in the metaverse?
Andrey Ivashentsev: About the same as in the real world — there will simply be more points of interest to which you can apply expertise. Someone will definitely start talking about how to build the right balance between real and virtual life, the first "10 rules for effective interaction with the metaverse" or something similar will appear. I can probably only ironicize here.
Anton Zanimonets: The answer here is very simple — not a single university or educational platform in the world provides practical knowledge about where and how exactly you can earn money. Almost no one writes how to create and sell an NFT, how to work with the community, how to invest and trade, how to become a virtual landlord. And there are plenty of opportunities for everyone.
Meta-workers are mostly busy making money silently, guided by the "strike while it's hot" rule, and are in no hurry to attract new members (unless this is, of course, another pyramid scheme). Although the demand for this education is huge - just look at the search results for NFT or Play-2-Earn gaming.
Visualization of daily transactions of the OpenSea NFT platform between users' wallets
What specialties and skills will be in demand in connection with the emergence and development of the metaverse?
Andrey Ivashentsev: We have yet to find out. In the conditions of tomorrow, they are about the same as today. In a few years, the vectors along which the development of the industry is moving will be clear, and therefore it will be possible to predict the demand for both specialists and the skills they need.
Anton Zanimonets: If you do not take into account the technical specialties (blockchain programming), which need a long and difficult training, then the first that come to mind are trading (without any money), marketing (to the one who invented — the ruble, who did — ten, who sold — one hundred), community management and DAO management (the hottest specialty), any professions from gaming (the most promising), artists, designers, other visualizers in AR / VR / XR and any 3D (less text — everything is decided by the picture).
Go to any crypto-job portal or the websites of leading metaverse companies, and see who they are looking for — you will immediately understand everything.
What investment opportunities will emerge?
Andrey Ivashentsev: Well, you can start with the fact that at the time of the announcement of Facebook's rebranding in Meta, the company's shares rose by 15%. Today, every company that declares its involvement in the creation of the metaverse will try to ride the wave of hype and raise investments for this.
In general, this is a good way to make money by relying on incoming news feeds. One has only to remember that, with a high degree of probability, these news feeds will further inflate the meta-bubble in the already overheated stock market, which means that such investments must be made as carefully as possible.
For example, at the time of the announcement, non-professional investors ran to buy Meta shares and, without understanding, raised the price of Canadian Meta Materials by 26%. It seems funny, but this is how the market works today.
As for investments in the metaverse itself, there is still nothing to invest in. There are a bunch of projects that want to sell virtual land or virtual currency — analogs of what has value in the real world. NFTs, which have some kind of market value and in which you can invest, come as close as possible to this.
Of course, there are no guarantees that they will have some value and tomorrow. Any picture, the rights to which the owner formally has, can be copied, and no legal consequences in this regard are provided in any legislation. But this does not interfere with investing.
How can you "integrate" into this niche in order to start building and monetizing the metauniverses before anyone else?
Andrey Ivashentsev: Everything is about the same as with successful startups. It is necessary to solve the "problem of tomorrow" for the emerging metaverse, making human life easier and more enjoyable. For example, to create a company for the supply of intravenous nutrition kits, so that users do not have to leave the virtual world for a meal. The Intelligent Dripper will dispense the formula solution, ensuring you can be "on the inside" 24/7.
To add fun, you can add a little alcohol to the dropper if necessary — the user will get real drunkenness at the moment when he drinks with friends in virtuality. And this is all on the surface, I didn't even try hard.
Looking back from this slightly bleak perspective, there are already opportunities for physical activity in the metaverse today. The sheer number of virtual reality fitness apps make sports not only rewarding but also fun. And this is probably the most understandable and enjoyable story in VR.
The rhythm game Beat Saber grossed over $100 million and was bought by Facebook a couple of years ago, once it became clear that it was critical to the sales of Oculus Quest VR headsets. Now, this is practically the first title that users purchase immediately after activating the helmet, and dozens and hundreds of developers are trying to repeat their success.
Anton Zanimonets: I always advise you to try everything yourself, even if the project fails. When I decided to touch the NFT, I set up an open neural network, created a digital avatar, named Jeanne Dark, and sold it at the Rarible auction for 2 ether — why not start-up capital on which you can test any business idea?
AI-powered avatar — no one believes she's real
I have to say a huge thank you to Rarible for noticing my work and featuring it on the home page. Choose a niche, fly into the communities around it, ask, meet, try — and in a couple of months you will be head and shoulders above those who read mass media and HYIP News.
What products will be successful in the metaverse?
Andrey Ivashentsev: It is logical that digital. Already today, the market for digital things is developing in an active way, with the most striking examples in the form of in-game items auction trading and the sale of digital art objects in the form of NFTs.
Science fiction writers who wrote about metauniverses and virtual worlds most often focused on developing virtual avatars. It is quite possible that this market will really take shape, and we will notice "avatars from fashion design houses" in people. There are no problems with virtual dresses today.
Anton Zanimonets: Everything that was successful in the physical world can be successful in the virtual one.
It is believed that services for the transfer of companies to the metaverse will be in demand. How realistic is this?
Andrey Ivashentsev: It's like digitalization services for "analog" corporations that are actively trying to figure out what Digital is, so as not to die out like mammoths. Most likely, there will be a lot of specialists who yesterday widely implemented Digital, and will now land Meta.
Already today, large Russian corporate clients have begun to slowly look for such people for the position of "director of development of the metaverse." Of course, none of them understands what this person will do approximately and why he is needed. But to miss the coming of the future is very scary.
Anton Zanimonets: This is not the future, this is the present. As an example, I can cite my company, which is engaged in helping brands integrate into the metaverse and build additional value for their customers. This is the development of an NFT game based on physical decorations for an American jewelry company, the construction of a virtual football stadium for a sports club, additional online education for the University in professions in VR, an NFT series for large streaming, and much more. I do not have time to respond to messages — there are a lot of requests.
Some brands are still wary of this topic due to unregulated legislation and environmental issues of mining. Someone plays by releasing comic drops, and someone seriously allocates a budget for the strategy and its implementation for 5 years in advance. It is clear that the later the integration process is started, the more expensive and longer all further actions will be.
What are your plans for the metaverse?
Andrey Ivashentsev: For me, this is just a new branch of the evolution of the industry, to which I have devoted the last 8 years. AR and VR are just immersive technologies that allow you to provide more interesting and high-quality content delivery. Now, they will have a clear scope of application, because these technologies are becoming critically important for creating a quality user experience in the metaverse.
For many years I have been developing this market and building a community, the expertise of which just yesterday increased its value for a mass audience.
This means that we will continue to develop the MIXR media portal, hold cool MIXR Conferences and bring together XR (and now the meta) industry professionals and enthusiasts.
Anton Zanimonets: We are building our own media, Themm Media, which aims to teach people how to make money in the metaverse. I will also continue to work with brands as an entrepreneur and as a digital artist - doing vibrant technological work, finding new sales opportunities, working with audience loyalty, and helping to find new business models in Web 3.0.