Research Institute: Consumers still don't know what the Metaverse is

Companies such as Apple and Meta are building virtual reality or augmented reality devices one after another, hoping to take a share of the future Metaverse market. But with consumers generally have no idea what the Metaverse is, their headsets will first need to expand in the enterprise market.

 Consumers still don't know what the Metaverse is

Next year, competition over the future Metaverse market will reach a climax when Apple is expected to release its first mixed-reality headset that supports augmented and virtual reality technologies. According to the relevant trademark application documents, Apple named the device Reality One or Reality Pro, which is an important new product released by Apple since the launch of the Apple Watch in 2014. More importantly, the new device will put Apple in direct competition with Facebook parent company Meta. Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg wants to build the company into a leading company in the metaverse, has invested tens of billions of dollars in it, and changed the company's name last October.

But the main problem is that very few consumers know exactly what the Metaverse is. According to a survey of 24,712 adults by market research firm Forrester, only 23 percent of American adults are familiar with the metaverse. Germany's figure fell to 14%. 

"I think the biggest challenge is ... first of all, no one really knows what it is," said Americus Reed, a professor of marketing at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. "It's almost impossible for people to fully understand... the value in that. Why would I do this?"

To change that, Apple and Meta must first bring new devices to the enterprise market, build on that and continue to improve the comfort of the devices and pique the interest of ordinary consumers.

The enterprise market is the development direction

Meta has released the Quest and Quest 2 and is currently the leader in head-mounted virtual reality. But it's not a monopoly. Microsoft, Magic Leap, and others are developing or supplying their own devices. With Apple on board, competition in the augmented reality and virtual reality headset market will intensify. Given that consumers still don't know exactly what these devices and metaverses can provide, these companies will need to prove their product value through the enterprise market.

The promise of augmented reality, virtual reality, and the metaverse in the enterprise are relatively straightforward. Relevant equipment can call up the operation manual for workers in real-time so that they can compare and check the operation steps against the manual in the workplace without having to flip through notebooks or websites. In addition, newbies can use the device to video chat with experienced staff, who can remotely guide them through all the complex technical tasks from replacing a car's fuel pump to repairing a fighter jet.

How can the Metaverse work in the corporate marketplace? Meta has launched a beta version of its Horizon Workrooms software, which allows users to hold virtual meetings in the Metaverse and communicate with each other through their avatars. Meta's idea is to allow employees to stay connected no matter where they are, replicating the user experience of meeting face-to-face in a remote meeting.

Microsoft also has a similar product, Microsoft Teams Mesh, that allows users to interact with other users' digital avatars through virtual meeting rooms or video chats.

JP Gownder, the research analyst at Forrester, explains: "In the enterprise, the market for training with virtual reality is very promising, with both mixed and augmented reality being used in field service, telemedicine, and training. , these three technologies can also be integrated into specialized 3D applications.

"Apple could seize these market opportunities right away, depending on its product and strategy," added Gunder. "But Microsoft has already started integrating Azure cloud computing into mixed reality services, and it's getting bigger. It's important to emphasize that, These companies can both compete and cooperate.”

By contrast, attracting corporate customers may be more difficult due to Meta's business model which relies too heavily on advertising and has a controversial history. Meta's advantage, though, is that the company already has two devices on the market, with Project Cambria expected to hit the market next month, putting it ahead of the competition in terms of hardware.

“Over the past 20 years, consumers have tended to ask corporate IT what devices they want based on their experience with home electronics,” Gunder said. “For the Metaverse market, many people will be at work first. Experience the Metaverse. We hope some of these employees will see the value of the metaverse and start using it for their personal lives. But the process will take several years. "

Post a Comment