The digital world has been drastically changing in the last 5 years, and in the light of the recent pandemic, there have been cutting-edge developments in technology, that is setting a new path for the industry, as the rise of Augmented Reality that thrives in the Metaverse.
The recent decision to rename Facebook to Meta gives more popularity to the term “Metaverse”. It is also the next step into the future and the way we perceive the world and its reality.
The emergence of the Metaverse and Augmented Reality also reimagines the way most industries function. It also paves way for industries to utilise various aspects to develop various products, services, and solutions.
In this article, we will explain to you a little bit what is this Metaverse that is changing the face of the digital industry and how UX designers can adapt to these new features.
What is Metaverse?
Metaverse is a hybrid of technology features such as virtual reality, augmented reality, and video in which users "live" in a digital realm.
The metaverse's supporters envisage its users working, playing, and remaining connected with pals through everything from concerts and conferences to virtual excursions around the world.
While the Metaverse experience has its roots in science fiction novels and films such as Neal Stephenson's Snow Crash, it is no longer a work of fiction.
We are on the verge of the Metaverse, and designers are racing to create experiences that mix existing technologies to create a completely new UX combining virtual reality, augmented reality, and now Extended Reality.
What are the core technologies that power the Metaverse?
Blockchain and Cryptocurrency
Blockchain technology provides decentralized and transparent solutions for many digital assets. Furthermore, in a virtual environment, these assets are owned, gathered, transferred, monitored, and accessible. Furthermore, cryptocurrencies make value transmission easier for a wide range of virtual-world applications.
Blockchain technology and the possibility to issue your own token (currency) for a metaverse are of crucial importance. If you live in an environment, you'd engage in some type of transactions with others. These transactions have some value in that world that may be transferrable to other worlds. Interoperable blockchains open the door for a different types of transactions. You can choose to keep your earned token and spend it in the same world. Or cash it out and spend it in the real world. Or transfer it to another virtual world and use it there.
Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality
Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) allow users to immerse themselves in and interact with a virtual environment (VR). In addition, Augmented Reality transforms physical objects and characters into digital visual components that can be employed in the Metaverse. Virtual Reality also uses computer-generated visuals to create a virtual environment.
Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality are employed in the Metaverse to build a digital world with physical simulations. As a result, companies are investing in AR and VR to develop Metaverse solutions.
Businesses and their customers are being transformed by artificial intelligence (AI). In addition, AI pioneers are now investigating the Metaverse's possible benefits from the technology. Furthermore, AI makes use of a number of skills to process various data sets.
Machine Learning and AI algorithms are also used to deliver actionable findings and insights.
In addition, AI is being developed with non-player characters in order to engage with Metaverse users. For example, AI is already being utilized to build characters who interact with and respond to players and their activities in a number of game scenarios.
In a similar spirit, the Metaverse suggests that AI is a useful technology capable of engaging with millions of people at the same time. It also offers assistance in a number of languages.
Internet of Things
The Internet of Things (IoT) is a cloud-connected network of networked devices. In addition, IoT makes use of sensors and technologies to automatically convey data.
Furthermore, in the Metaverse, the major role of IoT is to collect and share data from the real world.
As a result, more possibilities for accurate data are available. IoT can also connect millions of devices and consumers because Metaverse is a smartphone and modern user platform.
As a result, it broadens the scope of real-time simulations within the Metaverse and promotes the use of Augmented Reality.
Designing for the Metaverse
UX Designers will need to shift their viewpoints, talents, and methodologies in order to build experiences that are portals into other universes. They must first stop thinking of people who interact with technology as "users" in order to do so.
Instead, they should consider them "players" – people who inhabit, live, and exist in this virtual world.
To provide fantastic experiences for "players," UX designers will need to create a truly immersive design. One that allows people to live in virtual surroundings rather than just visit them. They must be totally engaged in order to not only attain, but also to maintain, uncomplicated goals.
UX Designers will need to widen their horizons in terms of talents and disciplines to achieve this. Economics, sociology, and psychology are all implicated because these virtual worlds are akin to societies with altogether other sets of ethics.
They must focus on the ethical issues that occur as a result of creating these virtual design worlds. As a result, viewing the Metaverse as a human civilization rather than a digital product or service will be critical, as design decisions will have far-reaching implications.
In their encounters, people will no longer be able to hide behind a technological barrier.
UX Designers may prepare for this new era by employing digital tools and teachings, such as accessible design, inclusivity, and ethical design. They should employ all of the tools they've created in the last decade, such as research, collaboration, empathy, and user advocacy.
Designing for the metaverse has a lot of benefits, but it also has a lot of drawbacks.