Metaverse technology is seeing strong early uptake, though widespread adoption is likely 8-10 years away, according to a report from industry association NASSCOM.
Metaverse has many interpretations. However, with a growing consensus on the key features of this technology, Metaverse refers to a sustained and immersive virtual world experience with digital-physical fusion that enables interoperability and concurrency to enhance a user’s ability to meaningfully communicate, transact and virtual identity, move assets, improve. and data from one world to another.
“While widespread adoption of Metaverse is likely to take 8-10 years, and the majority of deployments are in the POC (proof of concept) or MVP (minimum viable product) stage, the space is witnessing a strong early adoption,” said the report from the National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM) along with McKinsey and Company as a knowledge partner.
The report looks at key trends in adoption, potential applications of the Metaverse, and opportunities for service providers to play an active role in this development.
Trends in Enterprise Metaverse adoption are similar to the AI trends in 2017.
A survey conducted by McKinsey and Company found that by 2022, 57 percent of CXOs will have Metaverse initiatives underway, both long and short term.
Metaverse has been at the forefront of recent technological advancements to potentially become the next evolution of the Internet.
While the term “Metaverse” has been around for nearly two decades, the new internet avatar has seen an accelerated development driven by the technological revolution, consumer readiness, and the rise of consumer-driven marketing.
“Significant PE/VC investment and strong M&A commitments have been announced in the first half of 2022, valued at more than $120 billion (approximately Rs. 9,79,458 crore) (based on estimates between Jan-May ’22 ),” a NASSCOM statement said.
Enterprises are beginning to implement metaverse use cases across the value chain.
By 2030, industries such as retail, manufacturing, media, healthcare, telecom, professional services, and banking are likely to be the top drivers of enterprise use in Metaverse.
Emerging use cases in customer engagement, multi-channel customer support, and real-time simulations for product design are gaining popularity, according to the NASSCOM report.
It is also expected to “gamify” the future of work and employee collaboration. Several initiatives are underway, such as reimagining learning and development using gamified AR/VR (Augmented Reality/Virtual Reality)-based learning suites with virtual instructors, creating immersive employee recruitment and onboarding with avatar interaction, and networking with employees at job fairs and imagining digital twin offices for employee collaboration and meetings.
That said, the technology’s potential will be largely determined by factors such as clarity on return on investment, readiness of technology and talent, and ability to address societal challenges.
According to an independent survey by McKinsey and Company, 30-40 percent of CXOs surveyed report uncertain returns on their Metaverse investments and initiatives remain experimental.
The emerging talent pool of 3D/Technical Artists, Motion Designers, Graphics Engineers, AR/VR & Software Engineers, etc. will be key to achieving large-scale Metaverse capacity building in the future, it said.