Speaking at the 2022 Augmented World Expo, Unity CEO John Riccitello stated his belief that the metaverse will offer millions of destinations.
Riccitello has worked in the gaming industry for the past 25 years and has seen the creation of multiple titles that are now considered metaverse experiences.
Riccitello shared his definition of the metaverse in his Augmented World Expo speech, “The metaverse is the next generation of the internet that is always real-time, mostly 3D, mostly interactive, mostly social and mostly persistent.”
The Unity CEO also spoke on the metaverse’s sense of immersion. He says that MMOs have come close to providing the same level of immersion as they are real-time social experiences. He also spoke about the 1992 novel Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson, which coined the term metaverse and correctly predicted that the metaverse should be so immersive as to make users feel they are inside it. However, he disagrees with Snow Crash and Ready Player One’s perspective of there being on central metaverse with all virtual worlds inside it.
“I don’t see Netflix opening up a destination inside of Disney’s version of the metaverse,” said Riccitello. “I don’t see eBay opening up inside of Amazon.”
Rather Riccitello believes that there will be a plethora of metaverse destinations and that, in time, users will be able to transition between them seamlessly. Additionally, he doesn’t believe users will have the same avatar in each metaverse as different metaverse experiences will be best suited to different types of user representation.
Additionally, he believes the metaverse will be accessible on various types of devices, with or without the use of XR headsets. Riccitello predicts that all websites will have a metaverse component by the 2030s.
The Power of Unity
Unity is a power game engine responsible for roughly half of the video games made today and 60 percent of AR and VR experiences. Earlier this year, the metaverse contender acquired Ziva Dynamics, a leader in character creation. Additionally, Unity showcased its Digital Human 2.0 in a new demo called Enemies at GDC 2022.