Yes, Meta Is Conflating Its Metaverse with AR/VR on Purpose
By Betsy Burton
Meta’s Long Term Immersive Experience Strategy
I’m sure you’ve seen Meta’s video ads:
- Moving images of surgeons using augmented reality to practice a surgery before performing the actual surgery
- Images of a young woman stepping into a jet that then opens to the sky to enable her to explore space
- A farmer in his field tracking his product and using analytics to predict future yield by just pointing into the air
It all seems so positive and enticing.
“The metaverse may be virtual but its impact will be real” is the tagline. I would agree with this tagline, but the impact will not always be positive.
Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality
Virtual reality is a combination of hardware (headset) and software application that can seemingly immerse a user into a different reality.
For example, you can use a VR headset and application to fight off dinosaurs in a multi-user game or explore different fantasy worlds.
Augmented Reality is a combination of hardware (headset) and software application that can seemingly augment a user’s reality.
For example, you could use an AR headset and application to meet with a colleague and view an architectural model. You could use an AR headset and application to manage warehouse inventory.
But here is the critical point. Each of these uses is a different software application/service that utilizes the AR/VR headset.
In this world, users can create avatars that represent themselves and interact with other users or bots.
There are a number of metaverses already, and it is not a new concept. Second Life has been in existence for 10+years.
Meta’s Horizontal Worlds is one such metaverse. Meta (formerly named Facebook) provides basic tools to enable users to create an avatar, events, and content. And more advanced tools to create new worlds.
So what is different? And why Meta Metaverse?
Meta Metaverse Platform of Metaverses
Meta/Facebook knows how to create content platforms. One of the issues with metaverses is that there is little to no connectivity between metaverses. In addition, each is developed independently.
In steps Meta.
We believe Meta has less focus on creating its own complete metaverse, and more focus on creating the platform that would enable others to create their own metaverse.
Unlike the controlled and closed metaverses, this would be open to additional content and code. Facebook business model applied to the virtual world.
Now they are venturing into creating an environment where people, businesses, and governments can create whole new worlds, experiences, and content. And, in the future, it may be possible for AI enabled bots to generate additional content in Metaverse.
On the positive side, a university could create a metaverse on Meta to enable students to interact with each other.
A professor could use it to create content or events. On the negative side, a person/government/company could create an immersive environment that promotes misinformation, abuse, violence and anarchy.
Thinking about this concept is rather scary, especially given the challenges that Meta has faced managing the content in Facebook and Instagram.
Kids will have immersive experiences that look and feel real, that are generated by…who knows. People will feel that they have seen something and experience something that was completely generated.
Yes, Meta is conflating its metaverse with AR/VR on purpose. We believe Meta’s goal is to become the metaverse platform for any metaverse.
These metaverses may be created by gaming companies, media companies, consumer goods or any other company. They could be created by government agencies to help people or harm. They could be created by individuals, or in the future AI-enabled bots.
Meta is positioning Metaverse for the future as the place for all AR/VR immersive experiences, and thus the conflation of metaverse and AR/VR makes sense.
It is promoting an ideal world where people are collaborating, learning and playing.
If we’ve learned anything from current social media (Facebook, TikTok, Instagram), humans can do great things as well as really terrible things on a broad scale. And in an immersive environment, it can be significantly amplified.
Using Business Capability Modeling to Guide Business Transformation
A big challenge for organizations going through business transformation is understanding and exploring their future-state business model.
Business capability modeling can provide a powerful technique for exploring and communicating your future state in a way that is unencumbered by political issues related to domains, organizational structure, processes, or functions.
In this webinar, Aragon’s VP of Research, Betsy Burton, will be reviewing how business capability models can be used to guide strategic and operational investments. Webinar topics:
- When and why do organizations use business capability modeling?
- How does business capability modeling differ from other business modeling techniques?
- Examples of how a business capability model can be used.
This blog is a part of the Business Transformation blog series by Aragon Research’s VP of Research, Betsy Burton.
Missed the previous installments? Catch up here:
Blog 10: What Is a Business Capability Model?
Stay tuned! We publish a new blog every week.