As the popularity and value of Web3 technologies grow, one of the major barriers to mass adoption is still the need to bridge the digital world and the real world efficiently. Though NFTs and other digital assets have made record-breaking sales, many still see them as collector’s items or status pieces for tech enthusiasts only. In order for Web3 projects to achieve their full potential, developers will likely have to entice audiences with real-world value.
A number of companies are working on metaverses with real-world applications. Companies like Limoverse are using the metaverse to provide affordable wellness coaching, while projects like Metaverser are giving people the opportunity to earn passive income in the metaverse. While this industry is still in its infancy, these projects reflect the potential it has to transform the way we do business and interact with one another.
MeetKai, a conversational AI and VR company, has an interesting vision for how the metaverse can connect to the real world. As seen on their official website, the company envisions a metaverse “rooted in reality, not make-believe”, where users can enhance real-life activities, buy real-life assets, and take actions that affect the real world. All under the belief that productivity and accessibility are the keys to widespread metaverse adoption.
The idea of a metaverse with real-life impact is compelling, but what will it actually look like? MeetKai has released a series of demos that aim to answer that question. One of them is an AR Restaurant Ordering app launched by AWE where users are able to order with family and friends. The app enhances the ordering experience by allowing users to see AR images of dishes on their table mat, see the orders of the other people in their group, and sort through menu items according to dietary preferences.
On July 11th, MeetKai introduced a live “Phase 1 Beta” preview of the metaverse right in the middle of Times Square. The company turned Times Square’s 7th Avenue and 47th Street Billboard into a portal, able to take thousands of users to a Metaverse Times Square by scanning a QR code and using nothing but their smartphones.
In a Pokemon Go-type experience, users will be exploring a virtual Times Square where they can interact with other users and enter an alternate Louvre metaverse, also developed by MeetKai. One of them is a digital gateway to the Louvre, where users can interact with an AI-powered NPC (Non-player Character) of Leonardo DaVinci to ask him questions about his work. The experience will be available until August 11th.
The grand vision of MeetKai’s metaverse technology is to create an open virtual space where businesses of all kinds can connect with their audiences and create immersive user experiences. They have done similar work improving companies’ customer experiences with their cutting-edge conversational AI technology, which is able to understand negation, natural speech, and hold extended multi-turn conversations. This type of AI technology also has potential in the metaverse, allowing for rich, dynamic experiences personalized to each user.
If projects like the MeetKai Metaverse are successful, they may provide a major opportunity for digital assets and currency to take hold. With real-world applications, the metaverse won’t just be a place for virtual entertainment but could become a space with major practical applications for businesses like retail stores, food companies, non-profit organizations, and workplaces.