Over the course of a decade, the success of Bitcoin has managed to spawn an entire industry. Blockchain, the technology behind the original cryptocurrency, has been upgraded to increase the number of use cases beyond the exchange of value over the internet.
And while traders still use trading platforms such as Bitlevex to make profits from crypto trading, the future of cryptocurrencies might lie elsewhere.
Thanks to the implementation of smart contracts, blockchain has begun disrupting almost every industry known to man. Finances were only a beginning. Healthcare, education, supply chain, and gaming have shown to have optimal use cases for the decentralized ledger technology.
In this article, we will talk about the Multiverse, and how blockchain technology can finally make this science-fiction concept a reality.
Introduction to blockchain and smart contracts
Blockchain is the technology that was created to run the Bitcoin payment network. It’s a decentralized, distributed, and immutable ledger of digital records.
Some of its key characteristics are essential to its role in creating a sustainable metaverse, including:
- Decentralization – there’s no central authority that controls the blockchain.
- Fast and secure transactions – thanks to smart contracts, anything of value can have its digital representation on the blockchain. As such it can be used to create a virtual economy.
- Proof of ownership – the ledger is transparent and accessible to everyone, which allows for streamlined proof of ownership of digital assets.
What is the metaverse?
The metaverse is an open, virtual world, where the users are represented by their virtual avatars. People can play games, own real estate, communicate with each other, and participate in a virtual economy.
Movies like the Matrix or Ready Player One are good examples of a metaverse. However, until now, the metaverse was limited to centralized applications like video games. People could meet up in online games like Second Life or World of Warcraft, but once the company decides to pull the plug, the virtual world is gone forever.
That’s where blockchain technology comes into play. The decentralized ledger is distributed among millions of computers worldwide. This allows the metaverse to run on a sort of supercomputer that cannot be turned off or controlled by a single entity.
Furthermore, the technology allows us to create NFTs that can hold real value in the metaverse. For instance, real estate can be tokenized and used to exchange value. Video game characters and items become unique and retain their value outside of the game.
Why is the metaverse so important?
Almost every industry must start looking into the metaverse because it is becoming the next frontier for online interaction.
Today, many are willing to participate in the internet economy using the metaverse. Nearly every industry can be represented in the virtual world – entertainment, finances, real estate, gaming, education.
People will be able to meet up, buy a ticket for their favorite movie and watch it together with their friends in a virtual theater.
A good example of a beginning of a real metaverse is the video game The Sandbox. Here, content creators can sell their game items to other users using the in-game economy based on cryptocurrencies. These cryptocurrencies can then be sold for others or used to pay for goods and services in the real world, bridging the virtual economy with the real one.
The pandemic has pushed people to embrace online interaction, and not just for work or communication. The metaverse can be considered as the next iteration of the internet.
It will allow people not only to communicate and share data but equally participate in a decentralized economy fueled by blockchain technology and virtual/augmented reality.