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Big tech companies are revolving around interoperability On the New Year’s Day. Behind the hard words is a simple idea: In the metaverse, everyone should be able to jump from platform to platform without bureaucracy or technical difficulties.
“The discussion about the best standards and rules to establish this interoperability has only just begun,” said Conrado Leister, the company’s national managing director Target in Brazil. “So the more companies, creators and entities that are involved in the conversation,” the better.
In May, Mark Zuckerberg’s company announced a move in that direction, launching avatars in Latin America that can be used on any platform. “They’re still simple avatars, far from where we want to be: representing users very faithfully, reminiscent of holograms,” Lester said. “But this evolution will still take a few years. At the same time, we want users to experience our vision for the future.”
The conflict between the metaverse presented today and what the future should actually be technology is one of the topics of the executive’s interview business season. View key excerpts below.
The company announced the launch of 3D avatars in Latin America in May. It’s worth noting that these avatars are available on Instagram and Facebook — even if they’re not immersive environments.
You see, the incarnation is an inner part of the metaverse, the first interface to this new world. So we want users to understand our vision. We’re still at the beginning of the metaverse – it’s like the beginning of the internet, in a very elementary way. There’s a lot to develop, but the long-term vision is that we’ll be able to step into a real-world-like environment and be immersed in that experience. With evolution, the avatar should acquire a shape very close to you, almost like a hologram. But it will still take a while. Mark Zuckerberg talks a lot about five to ten years of vision, and it makes sense. We need to see an evolution of the ecosystem of hardware, creators and solution providers.
It was also announced that the avatar would be available on other platforms. Are we starting to see Metaverse interoperability?
Yes. In fact, this is a very important point, because not only the clone, but the entire Metaverse cannot stay in one place. Therefore, the interoperability issue is fundamental. You must be able to go from one immersive experience to another without friction. If you purchased a unique jersey from the team’s website, you must be able to wear it anywhere. It’s important to ensure this diverse structure, even though we know it’s impossible to do virtual worlds with just one company. It’s as if the entire internet is going to be made by one company, can you imagine that? impossible. The discussion about how we built this interoperability started right from the start. So the more companies, creators and entities involved, the better.
Another novelty is that Horizon World’s virtual space platform can be accessed through a browser.
It’s an alternative to the UX metaverse, even if it’s not yet our vision for the future. On the web, you can go in and see more or less what the space is like. It’s not that immersive experience, but it’s a start, as if the user is using a virtual augmented reality filter.
If the essence of a virtual world is an immersive experience, isn’t this kind of advertising contradictory? It’s like saying, “I’m going to show you what a metaverse is, and show you something that isn’t a metaverse.”
I agree with you. The best explanation I see is the evolution of the mobile internet. In the beginning, people accessed Facebook on their mobile phones, but there was only text, no pictures, no video, nothing. Then came the first smartphones, with simple cameras. Then people started posting pictures. But cannot make video because internet bandwidth is very limited. In other words, technological innovation is necessary for the world we have today. So today’s metaverse is like the stage where we only published text on mobile devices. It’s not just a matter of showing immersion, but being able to contextualize what’s going to happen.
The difference is that in the case of the mobile Internet, users gradually discover the possibility. In the metaverse example, there’s a company that says, “It’s going to be like this, and I can’t show it to you yet.”
I understand your point, but I think it’s part of a future point of view. And, honestly, I believe it changes a lot when one starts testing it. In the US, anyone trying out the Oculus Quest 2 will say within two minutes, “Okay, that’s it.” But again, it’s a journey. These disruptive technological innovations take time because they are many hardware challenges. How do you move your hands in the metaverse? How to keep your eyes open in virtual? So there is a lot to evolve.
When will the Oculus Quest 2 be released in Brazil?
It has no date. Obviously, we want to bring this device to more countries as soon as possible. But many customization processes are required. In addition to translating everything into Portuguese, we also need to make sure we create the best experience possible. All I can say is I’m excited and I can’t wait to have Quest 2 here.
Mark Zuckerberg said at SXSW that we are far from ideal glasses, which should be smaller, lighter, more affordable and easier to wear.
Yes, it is true. Mark often says people are impressed with big things, like “I’m going to build a rocket that can take humans to Mars,” as SpaceX puts it. But, for him, being able to miniaturize things is more complex and complex. Making simple glasses with thin lenses that carry all the resources of the virtual world is very challenging.
Meta opened its first brick-and-mortar store in California in May. Isn’t it ironic that a physical space might be the best way to show a virtual world?
I agree this is probably the best way to show our vision. Because store advice is less about selling and more about experimenting. Regardless, you can test out Oculus Quest, Ray-Ban Stories, the 3D avatar experience, and the Metaverse. Currently only the California store, but I believe the idea is to bring it to other countries as well.
Among the possibilities we have today, what are the opportunities for brands?
There are many opportunities. What we say to brands is that they have to run the best possible campaigns with the resources available today, which is already very interesting, not only to promote their products, but also to prepare for the future. The use of augmented reality is an example of how this immersive experience can be created. Brands like Natura and Avon allow customers to understand their makeup through technology. Fiat has launched a campaign where customers can use the RD for a car 3D tour. It’s still not an immersive moment, but it’s close.
You also intend to increase your investment in early stage startups through the NPE Ignite Fund. How does this selection work?
The focus is on seed investments, for companies that have prototypes but are not yet operational, which shows innovation in Latin America – related or not to the Metaverse. You register your idea, and if you’re selected, you’ll get Meta’s participation to help you develop it.
We are five months away from elections in Brazil. What is Facebook doing to try to curb misinformation?
This year, we worked closely with TSE to create a reporting and verification pipeline. Users themselves can report content that they believe to be inauthentic. We restarted the operations center that was already in use in the last election to try to quickly resolve the spread of misinformation. The hub also facilitates the interface between reporting users and fact-checking. There are several ways to try to create a platform that is not used by malicious people.