What is the Metaverse?

A Metaverse is a virtual environment shared among several worlds and developed through the integration of mixed reality—augmented reality (AR) and virtually reality (VR)—and the Internet.

What is the Metaverse?
Photo by UK Black Tech / Unsplash

Part one of a two part series on all you need to know about the Metaverse

A Metaverse is a virtual environment shared among several worlds and developed through the integration of mixed reality—augmented reality (AR) and virtually reality (VR)—and the Internet. You've probably witnessed a component of the Metaverse in separate forms on different platforms such as gaming or training sessions. Yet, these different components or pieces of the Metaverse haven't been brought together.

This is the first of a two-part series that will introduce you to the Metaverse, its essential component (AR/VR), and its practical applications in many sectors. The second instalment of the series will go over how the metaverse fits into the cryptocurrency and gaming industries, as well as how prominent tech corporations are employing various components of metaverse technology.

Brief Background

The word "Metaverse" was invented by Neal Stephenson in his science fiction novel Snow Crash in 1992. In this story, individuals talk and connect in a 3D virtual environment that is symbolically identical to the actual world.

And since then, the word "Metaverse" has been used to describe the emergence of any alternate universe based on virtual reality. The origins of the Metaverse date back to the twentieth century, when the internet was just becoming a common utility.

Today, the internet is seen as a fundamental luxury that serves as an alternative to the physical world.

Key To The Metaverse

The metaverse promises to give consumers an AR experience that, in many respects, will outperform actual reality in terms of perceptions and possibilities. What is frequently absent from conversations about the metaverse's capabilities is how all of this content will be safeguarded and preserved. If people are having to invest more time in this augmented reality, how can they be certain that their activities and data will be protected?

A simple and obvious answer to this question is one word, blockchain.

Undoubtedly, the metaverse is a developing and rapidly expanding field, but the fundamental reality is that – in order to support and actualise a fully functional metaverse – blockchain and crypto assets will have to play a key role in its wide adoption. To fulfil the fullest capability of this field, an open and verifiable manner of conducting transactions and interacting with one another would be required. And blockchain and crypto assets may just be a plausible solution to this demand. The metaverse may get a lot of attention, but blockchain and crypto assets are critical to seeing this concept realise its maximum capabilities.

To summarise, the metaverse requires crypto in order to function properly. Having said that, the metaverse also represents a huge potential for blockchain and crypto assets to enter the mainstream. This will be covered in greater detail in the second part of the series under crypto metaverse and metaverse gaming.

The Metaverse In Everyday Activities

Even though the metaverse is envisioned as a technology for the future, we have already started stepping into the metaverse age. The following paragraphs highlight how the various parts or building elements of the Metaverse are utilised in our daily lives.

  • Catching a monster that is only visible through your phone when playing Pokémon Go or building a fence around your actual house in Minecraft Earth are fine examples of how augmented reality, an access point of the Metaverse, is used in mobile gaming. Fortnite and Animal Crossing are also examples of games that give a glimpse of what the Metaverse may be like.
  • Another example of the utilisation of virtual environments is Facebook’s Horizon Workrooms. Individuals on this platform use the Oculus Quest 2, a mixed reality headset, to participate in virtual meetings.
  • Virbela’s virtual office platform allows users to explore a cloud workspace with a full-size avatar. To mimic real-life conversations, this platform employs three-dimensional sound where a user’s voice varies in intensity as they move around a colleague’s avatar.
Classic Pokeball Toy on a bunch of Pokemon Cards. Zapdos, Ninetales and a Trainercard visible.
Photo by Thimo Pedersen / Unsplash

Features of Metaverse Technology

The following characteristics define the structures of the Metaverse technology:


A Metaverse is an interactive collection of virtual worlds that have been integrated to mimic the actual world. As a dynamic environment, it includes social ties, global infrastructure, and other actual characteristics. A lot of users can exist in a Metaverse at the same time. This implies that it allows two users to engage with one another as well as with other parts of the Metaverse.


The Metaverse's technology is inherently persistent. In contrast to the internet, which can be turned down or closed at any time, the Metaverse cannot be interrupted or shut down. It is tenacious. With massive volumes of information encapsulated in a Metaverse, virtual reality is confined to the conceptual realm into which users enter. Whatever reason the Metaverse is designed for, it will persist as long as its underlying technology exists.

Parallel Reality

Another notable element of the Metaverse is that it is a duplicate of the actual world in which we now reside. A Metaverse will soon become a source of amusement and continuity in a virtual reality experience, as well as a means of avoiding the reality of our life.

Because of the present epidemic crisis all over the world, the virtual world has become even more important.

Accessing the Metaverse

When most people hear the word Metaverse, they immediately think of a virtual reality. They envision a completely immersive virtual world accessible via headsets that take people to a fantastical realm. This is not wrong, but the Metaverse is way more than just VR.

Rather, VR is a gateway technology to the Metaverse.

Mobile phones and networks enable unparalleled and instantaneous access to the Metaverse. Users can share massive volumes of information in networked cyberspace. Users may even communicate in Massive Multiplayer Online Games (MMOGs) like Fortnite.

All of these exchanges take place inside the Metaverse network. As mobile phone penetration increased, a new form of connecting with the Metaverse emerged. The sophisticated cameras and continual internet connectivity have enabled the Metaverse to be projected on the actual world. This is known as AR. AR is a technology that superimposes digital information on top of real-world settings.

You may think of AR as an art exhibition in that you can gaze at and interact with virtual augmentations on actual locations but you can't feel them. When you begin to engage with the virtual realm, the abstract aspect of AR may begin to fade and the reality becomes a mixed kind.

When you can engage directly with the Metaverse in a physical location, this is referred to as Mixed Reality (MR). To summarize, you do not need any special device or VR headset to engage with the Metaverse. You can enter the Metaverse straight from your phone.

A Metaverse utilizes a combination of gadgets and software to deliver a seamless, immersive, and digital world that tricks your perceptions into thinking you're somewhere else. VR has made some amazing breakthroughs in past years, but it is still a long way from becoming widely used. There is some thrilling development being done in the vertical.

What Are Some Practical Applications Of The Metaverse?

The most common application is training. However, the entertainment industry was among the first businesses to provide customers with VR experiences, while manufacturing and healthcare were among the first to adopt MR in the workplace.

Here are a few instances of how verticals are now utilising the Metaverse's components to execute virtual workshops and develop new products.

Training Workshops

NASA utilises AR/VR on the international space station (ISS) to control robots remotely or to accomplish maintenance activities. Astronauts also utilise MR headgears for ISS training and potential flight preparation. Throughout these experiments, a representative of mission control back on Earth may live stream the astronaut's visual field through the headgear and annotate 3D pictures on the astronaut's display.


Doctors were among the first to adopt AR to collaborate. Microsoft's MR goggles are also allowing medical specialists from all around the world to virtually interact during treatments for a more modern approach to surgeries. Surgeons may use hand motions and voice orders to pull up 3D pictures from scans, retrieve patient records, and communicate with other experts using the MR gear. For doctors and other healthcare workers, this hands-free manipulation is a huge breakthrough.

Sports and entertainment

Unity just developed the Unity Metacast technology, which will broadcast three-dimensional sports in real-time. Athletes are photographed on the field, and the data is utilised to construct digital doubles. The first 3D transmission was an MMA battle between two competitors shot in a tiny venue using more than a hundred cameras and motion sensors. The technology is expected to advance, with fewer cameras and larger playing areas. Recording real-life activity and instantly digitising it might make it easier to construct NFTs from notable moments in games. The NBA's unique concept of NFTs–Top Shots cards–might even be adopted by other sports.

Sep, 2017.
Photo by Finn / Unsplash

What To Expect

As different organisations create their renditions of the Metaverse the universe will likely expand exponentially to become a network of multiple interconnected virtual worlds where users can seamlessly switch from one world to another instantaneously. Some features of the Metaverse will also be more suited for practical applications than others. For example, gaming would be a logical path as a lot of gamers are already used to online gameplays and certain games now exist in the Metaverse.

Stephenson's initial concept of the Metaverse was spectacular, and also full of potential, especially in today’s pandemic age. And the thought of being able to socialise or connect with others while feeling as if you're actually around them is intriguing.


Antin, D. (2020, May 5). The technology of the metaverse, it’s not just VR. Retrieved from The Startup:


Combs, V. (2021, October 29). The metaverse: What is it? Retrieved from Tech Republic: https://www.techrepublic.com/article/metaverse-what-is-it/

Cookie Consent and Choices. (2020, October 28). Retrieved from NPR:


Frey, T. (2021, September 16). The history of the metaverse. Retrieved from The Futurist Speaker:


Rawat, S. (n.d.). Everything About Metaverse Technology. Retrieved November 10, 2021, from Analytics Steps:


Robertson, A., & Peters, J. (2021, October 4). What is the metaverse, and do I have to care? Retrieved from The Verge:


Read more