Tech giants bank on VR for metaverse opportunities

Visitors play VR games in HTC Corp’s exhibition space during the 2022 World 5G Convention in Harbin. Heilongjiang in August [ZHANG SHU/FOR CHINA DAILY]

HTC Corp will increase the popularity of virtual reality technology in both the consumer and enterprise markets as part of a broader push to better penetrate the metaverse, a senior executive said.

As a popular technology term, metaverse refers to shared virtual environments or digital spaces created by technology, including virtual and augmented reality.

Charles Huang, HTC’s corporate vice president, said there is growing demand for VR devices in various segments such as teleconferencing, training, education, healthcare, design and exhibitions, with the COVID-19 pandemic bolstering its use. VR equipment

According to Huang, HTC is banking on the business-to-business segment and has placed a strong emphasis on collaborating with industry partners to develop new applications.

“Metaverse is not a slogan or a distant future,” Huang said, adding that HTC is working hard to strengthen technological exchange and information sharing in the metaverse and is committed to building a connected metaverse ecosystem. mutually beneficial and compatible

HTC has launched an open metaverse platform called Viverse, which offers a seamless experience accessible from any device, anywhere and enabled by VR, AR, high-speed connectivity, AI and blockchain technology.

information from marketing consultants International Data Corp shows that the investment size of the global AR and VR market is $14.67 billion in 2021 and is expected to grow to $74.73 billion in 2026, at a compound annual growth rate of 38.5 percent.

IDC said IT-related costs in China’s AR and VR market will reach an estimated $2.13 billion in 2021 and will grow to $13.08 billion in 2026, making it the world’s second-largest market.

Pedro Palandrani, technology analyst at research firm Global X ETFs, said early metaverses exist now. It gave investors a glimpse into its enormous potential. However, a successful metaverse is expected to have an open, decentralized platform accessed by VR headsets and powered by blockchain technology.

“A truly immersive metaverse experience,” Palandrani said. It engages all the senses – sight, sound, touch, smell and taste. Much of today’s VR involves sound and vision,” says Palandrani.

To speed up the development of the metaverse, other Chinese tech companies are also moving fast. Huawei and Alibaba, for example, were among the first conglomerates, joining Meta, formerly known as Facebook, and US-based Microsoft. to form a group of standards aimed at accelerating the development of the metaverse

Participants in the Metaverse Standards Forum include some of the largest companies working in the sector. From chip makers to game companies as well as established standards-setting bodies such as the World Wide Web Consortium, according to the group.

“Industry leaders have stated that the potential of the metaverse is best realized if it is built on the basis of open standards,” the group said. open”

Pan Helin, co-director of the Digital Economy and Financial Innovation Research Center at Zhejiang University’s International Business School, said the move indicates that companies are accelerating the idea of ​​the metaverse and want to make their nascent digital worlds more productive. compatible

That could make it easier for developers to create the same content for different metaverse platforms, or for users to export data from one service to another. This will help build a thriving ecosystem in the future, Pan said.

Seven Chinese tech giants — Huawei, Tencent, Baidu, OPPO and Alibaba — were among the top filings of virtual and augmented reality patents globally during 2018. two years ago Singapore-based research and development analytics provider Pat Snap

Bloomberg Intelligence predicts that global metaverse revenue could reach nearly $800 billion by 2024.

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