What does the evolution of the metaverse mean for the future of crypto? 

The evolution of the metaverse explained

Metaverse this, metaverse that… It’s everywhere. Buzzwords as such come and go in the tech space, but with companies like Facebook rebranding to ‘Meta’ and luxury giants entering the metaverse space, it might not go anytime soon. 

The metaverse emerged in the 1980s in Neil Stevenson’s novel ‘Snow Crash’, leading to the introduction of VR machines in the 1990s. Fast forward to today, we’re seeing major tech companies trying to build a more immersive, reality-reflected internet for the next generation – slowly breaking down barriers between the real and the digital. 

Despite the idea of the metaverse being around for a while now, it still is in its early stage. The participation of large global corporations tells us that the metaverse has been chosen as the next digital frontier – pointing to enormous growth opportunities for numerous industries in the coming years.

And needless to say, there has been rapid growth in the metaverse space with real-life benefits emerging by the day, and companies creating new ways to interact with their communities. According to Citibank, the market size of the metaverse economy is expected to reach $10 trillion, with 5 billion projected users by 2030 globally. So yes, there is definitely something big happening here. 

Crypto & the metaverse go hand-in-hand

Lying at the heart of both the metaverse and crypto is blockchain technology. For many tech developers and investors, these two things are intertwined and work collaboratively to contribute to the Web3 space: a user-owned, permissionless, decentralized internet. Whereas in previous decades, technologies like VR placed users at a passive level, new technology now enables users to be active in the digital world – enabling transactions, trading assets, and making a real-life impact through digital spaces. These are possible thanks to crypto, which is the main currency in metaverse worlds, facilitating seamless peer-to-peer transactions and allowing true decentralization. Clearly, the metaverse and crypto go hand-in-hand. Several projects in the GameFi space have proven so, most prominently Axie Infinity, The Sandbox, and Decentraland. Each project hosts its unique metaverse, virtual reality, and native crypto token. With such GameFi platforms, there’s also a strong integration of NFTs, which were popularized following the rise of crypto, and have been facilitating the decentralization which takes place in the metaverse. This dynamic unveils a symbiotic relationship between the evolution of crypto, NFTs, and the metaverse, which mutually facilitate each other’s growth. 

The birth of such GameFi platforms signals a bigger picture– the evolution of the metaverse. Yes, crypto plays a big part in facilitating the metaverse and the decentralization it supports. And the metaverse is projected to grow much larger than it currently is in a couple of decades. So what exactly does this evolution of the metaverse mean for the crypto space? 

Becoming the invisible

Crypto has always been heavily technical, but that’s because technology is the basis of crypto. The number of ideas, concepts, and projects emerging every day has hindered the community from being able to understand the space and eventually use it.

The evolution of the metaverse offers the crypto space to flip – and one day becomes invisible. The metaverse is a new paradigm where our digital and physical lives converge. An increasing number of retail industries and brands – from music and gaming to fashion and e-commerce – embrace this new paradigm, also using digital avatars with NFTs and innovating new ways to create digitized experiences for consumers.

But why is this so? The metaverse offers industries new ways to augment their digital presence by allowing hyper-personalization, verified digital ownership, and experiential digital retail experiences. But most importantly, the metaverse represents a cultural shift and brands eager to stay relevant with the next generation. 

Designed to cater to changing values and needs of this generation, it is no surprise that people want to hop on this bandwagon. And what will allow them to participate in such a trend is crypto. Yes, crypto is heavily technical and difficult to understand for the average Joe. But with the metaverse beginning to tap into retail industries and crypto being the basis of participation, people won’t even have to know the technicals – or more accurately, people won’t even know they’re using crypto. 

As the metaverse continues to scale, so will crypto by being hidden under the flashy interfaces, digital avatars, and our future basis of socialization. Eventually, crypto will be used without people’s knowledge. Indeed, current applications and the concept of the metaverse are still developing. Most people don’t know what the metaverse means, and there doesn’t seem to be a set architectural framework supporting it yet. However, the increasing demand for participation in the metaverse and moves of the world’s largest retail industries point to immense potential. Perhaps mainstream adoption for crypto isn’t so far away, and the continuing expansion of the metaverse is key to unlocking such adoption.

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