Here’s what needs to happen before Web3 and Metaverse really take off

A sharp devaluation of NFTs

You may remember that former Twitter boss Jack Dorsey sold his first tweet as NFT about a year ago, and Malaysian entrepreneur Sina Estavi bought it for as much as $ 2.9 million. His plan was to sell it again at a huge profit: for $ 48 million. It turned out, however, that the market meant something else. After a few weeks, the highest bid was only $ 280. Eventually the price went up, but it never went above $ 14,000. Long story short, the tweet lost about 99% of its value.

Unfortunately, this is not the only story. In early May, 8 Cryptopunks were sold at a loss. Cryptopunk # 273 was the heaviest, bought about half a year ago for $ 1,026,499 and now resold for a paltry $ 139,530.

The hype surrounding NFTs is, in fact, about their collective function, with a small number of people strongly speculating about a possible explosive increase in the value of a unique piece. That kind of speculation is not only very difficult but also very risky. So I think 99% of these investments are likely to lose value in the coming weeks, just like previous examples.

TikTok vs Metaverse

But what about the meta-verse? Most people expect teenagers to be really excited about it, right? But a recent study, which surveyed 7,000 teens about the future of social media and the meta-verse, showed that only 26% of teens actually own a VR device. Only 5% go into metavers every day and 82% do it less than a few times a month. The reality is that we are still at a very early stage. And that while Web2’s new tools, such as TikTok, are still growing fast and exploding in popularity. These are the places where teens actually spend the most time these days.

So my point is that we’re probably in a bubble when it comes to metaverset and Web3. This is how technologies tend to evolve, explains the ingenious Carlota Perez. The good news is that after the bubble and the crash, there will be a golden era of structural growth, production and employment.

Source: Carlota Perez

But before we reach this golden age of Web3 and the meta-verse, we will have to invest a lot of time, effort and thought to understand what the market needs, what use cases are, and how to create value for customers.

In a previous blog post, I talked about the most important customer benefits of Web3 for me:

  • Privacy and data control,
  • shared economic benefits,
  • and enhanced experiences.

Create value

I truly believe in creating significant value in metaverse and Web3 projects by focusing on customer benefits, value beyond gimmicks, or collectibles. If you’re looking for short term profit, it’s like spending money at a casino: the chance of losing a lot of money is much greater than the chance of making a profit on it. I find it very interesting to see which organizations really know how to use this new technology to create real value for the customer. A good example of a company that has been successful is Zamna, a company that organizes secure and hassle-free identity verification for aviation.

In that perspective, it’s also interesting to see how Lego and Epic Games announced a partnership to create a metaverse that is safe for children. Like me, many parents are worried that their children are entering this virtual world and do not know what is happening there. It’s still relatively easy to monitor young children’s behavior on their phone or computer or tablet, but there’s no way to track who they bump into and what’s happening in VR. The same goes for their data: we have no idea what will happen to them.

So Lego and Epic Games are on a mission to create this safe haven. And it makes a lot of sense: on the one hand there is the hugely reliable brand of Lego, and on the other hand Epic Games, which has proven that it can build virtual worlds for millions of people on popular platforms like Fortnite. For me, these are the kind of projects that really add value to the customer, and that will probably also prove to be the first real success stories for Web3 and the meta-verse.

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