The Metaverse Is Still Evolving – WWD

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    Now that the Metaverse has abandoned the title of “IT” technology to artificial intelligence, and AI is unlikely to do so anytime soon – think of these environments as abandoned buildings, virtual environments that are ready to be shut down. You may want to. Tumbleweed blows through.

    one would be wrong.

    Media attention may have shifted, but these virtual world builders are very busy. Because with the same vision of the Metaverse as the inevitable online gathering place of the future, there are still brands to serve, users and, for some, a thriving gaming community.

    Back in the day, builders have deliberately moved to improve the experience, add features, and refine actions and interactions.

    “This fall, Metaverse fashion is going through a bit of a renaissance,” explains Sam Hamilton, Creative Director of the Decentraland Foundation. “The latest addition, the ability to export VRM files [virtual reality model] Decentraland avatars can now be used on other platforms, a big step forward in interoperability.

    “This feature not only allows users to maintain their own unique identities across multiple virtual worlds, but also provides a great opportunity for wearable creators within our ecosystem to showcase their designs on various platforms.”

    One of the biggest criticisms of the early Metaverse was the inability for people to bring their digital possessions and avatar wear from one Metaverse to the next. At Metaverse Fashion Week in the spring, interoperability was a key overarching theme, with Decentraland partnering with another metaverse, The Sandbox and Over, as a co-host. A potential standard exists for VRM. If this gets broad adoption across at least most of the popular platforms, it could go a long way in improving the experience and boosting virtual collectibles and fashion.

    Avatars are very important to everyone on our platform, everyone in our community, including brands. “

    Christina Wootton, Roblox

    Decentraland will host a special event in collaboration with Mona on September 15th to commemorate VRM, with plans underway to make the feature a central part of the upcoming 2024 Metaverse Fashion Week.

    At Roblox, the company has reimagined avatars in recent years, opting for a sleeker aesthetic than the original blocky shapes that have been the platform’s signature look since its launch in 2006. owners to provide facial expressions that can imitate the facial expressions of their owners. Recently, the platform released options for customizable head and body, along with new facial animations.

    “We are increasingly seeing how people come together, interact with each other, and express themselves through avatars,” said Roblox Chief Partnerships Officer Christina Wootton. “It will make us even more excited to express ourselves when it comes to digital fashion and beauty by creating avatars that feel and look just like us. It’s very important to everyone on the platform, everyone in the community.”

    Wootton cited a joint study of fashion trends in the Metaverse that the company released last year with Parsons School of Design, which found that 70% of Gen Z respondents said their avatar and real-life style interacted. It is said that he admitted that That same year, Roblox also debuted Layered Clothing, a feature that allows for more realistic 3D apparel for avatars.

    More announcements are expected at RDC, Roblox’s annual developer conference in September. Given the platform’s focus on communication and expressive avatars, further enhancements could be provided along this direction.

    It’s worth noting that Decentraland’s focus on interoperability makes this less of an issue in populated virtual worlds. While some of these platforms have daily triple- or four-digit traffic, Roblox has an average of 65.5 million daily active users, according to its latest earnings report. South Korea’s top metaverse, Zepeto, a chat-based app that also features gaming, reportedly has over 400 million registered users since its release in 2018. Depending on the list, soaring numbers for Minecraft and Fortnite apply as well.

    Whatever happens to the broader metaverse movement, gaming as an industry projected to be worth $187.7 billion this year is arguably going nowhere. In fact, the field seems to be doubling down when it comes to virtual fashion. In May, Epic Games, developer of Fortnite and maker of his Unreal Engine, a game engine many companies also use to create virtual apparel, partnered with his CLO. Virtual fashion is a technology typically used for digital design and prototyping to announce mutual investments.

    Many companies also told WWD that they are considering various initiatives, including newer and more sophisticated wearables. Layer augmented reality fashion on top of plain clothes. Collectibles generated by artificial intelligence. Such as “twinning” virtual and physical goods. We are also working on ways to support real-world retail with virtual campaigns, enhanced social features and loyalty rewards.

    Continuing development and investment — Zepeto just recently landed a $13 million seed round in a ZTX collaboration with Jump Crypto for open world environments, assets and crafting tools — while Gucci, Nike, Balmain and Tommy Brands such as Hilfiger continue to participate. In other words, the Metaverse and related efforts are still a work in progress. Only now, away from the heat wave.


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