Citizens say it will have positive and negative effects.
Imagine a world where you can meet your friends, work in your office, transact, play games and make new investments seated on your living room couch. You no longer need a venue to host a party for your friends. They can meet you virtually.
Interesting, isn’t it? All this and a lot more would be possible in a metaverse. Who wouldn’t want technology like that, you might think.
Bengalureans, however, are skeptical when it comes to metaverse, a virtual-reality space in which users can interact with a computer-generated environment and other users. They hold mixed views about the new technology, which is still developing.
Raunak Sharma, a resident of Bengaluru, informed The Observer: “Metaverse is a digital platform which will enable people to maintain a highly active social presence in addition to a physical presence. So you’ll be able to meet your friends, family members and loved ones through the digital space as and when you like. I don’t understand why someone would want or need that. There’s no substitute to being physically present somewhere and enjoying the moment.”
Another resident, Tanya Sharma, holds a similar view. “Metaverse will allow us to do everything in the virtual world. More importantly, it’ll feel real. A person will be able to purchase homes, play video games, go shopping and attend parties without leaving his home. It sounds good but scary at the same time. What if we become addicted to it and nobody ever wants to leave their home? It’ll be like having two different lives, one in the real world and one in the virtual world.”
Suraj Prasad, a software engineer, doesn’t like the concept. “I have already wasted so much time on social media due to the lockdown as I can’t study all the time and have to do something to pass my time in between. But… I don’t want to be a prisoner of the virtual world. I can clearly see no children in my area are interested in playing outdoor games. In our times, we used to play all the time.”
Some individuals, however, are excited about metaverse.
With a glint in his eyes, Tanmay Nagori, a graduate from Netaji Subhas University of Technology, said: “In my view, metaverse will have a boom around 2023. The gaming industry is already booming so rapidly. The interest in virtual reality will definitely be the same. Society, however, will be impacted in both positive and negative ways. It’ll be interesting for me as I like gaming and all other stuff. Definitely exciting!”
Supreet Sreedharan, a gamer, shared: “I am excited about the prospects of virtual reality/augmented reality. Metaverse will open a whole new world for gaming. It’ll present an immersive experience for gamers all around the world. There won’t be any limitations.”
Krithik B., VP-Operations at Juego Studios, a game developer in Bengaluru, explained: “Metaverse will make the gaming experience more flexible. Users will be able to build their own lives in the gaming world. They’ll be able to buy assets inside the game and sell them using crypto. Many gaming companies are investing in it. It’s the future of gaming.”
Recently, a couple from Tamil Nadu held a metaverse wedding reception. It was attended by 500 guests. The virtual event generated curiosity among people.
Global technology giants, which usually sense the next technology wave before its widespread adoption, are investing heavily in metaverse. But there are people who question the sustainability of metaverse as a new technology wave in coming years. Whether it is a trend or a fad, only time will tell.