This is the only thing you need to understand about the metaverse.

It’s a shared virtual space where almost anything is possible.

You can play, work, earn money, invest in assets, explore, get entertainment, meet people or spend time alone where and how you want.

It’s the connected freedom.

In the guide below, we’ll walk you through the most important and exciting aspects of it.

And suggest ways to look at it as an investment opportunity.

What Is Metaverse?

It is a shared, connected, always-on experience.

Mobile internet has some elements of it.

You are connected. You can videocall your relatives or colleagues.

You can play games together, pay for products or services. Get paid. You can invest and see the performance of your assets close to real-time.

…but everything happens on a flat screen. Be it a smartphone or a laptop, you can always look away.

In the metaverse, you are surrounded by the virtual world. It is everywhere.

The virtual café where you have a business meeting with another metaverse-connected person will have its own sound ambiance and a look outside. The street and everything in it will be generated for you in real-time.

The difference between the metaverse and the real world is that in metaverse, you have more choices. In fact, you can decide on almost anything. Where you live, how your surroundings look, what to do and with whom…

It’s like a million people going to a theater, and everybody gets the best seat.

Here’s an example… Last year, the video game Fortnite hosted a concert by Marshmello.

Image: Marshmello’s performance in Fortnite

Almost 11 million people attended. But you don’t see that many people in the videos, like this one.

What the metaverse engine did was split “the main reality” into tens of thousands of smaller “realities,” both of which had its own concert and a different group of people attending.

This is done to make sure there’s no overcrowding. Above all, the metaverse should feel natural.

This is the mind-blowing power of the metaverse. It’s an infinitely customizable experience for everybody.

The metaverse is a machine-powered always-on reality with virtually unlimited choices and variety.

How Much Is Metaverse Worth?

It depends on how you look at it.

As an always-connected economy that can accommodate essentially everyone on earth, trillions of dollars.

Venture capitalists like Matthew Ball peg the long-term value of the metaverse at $30 trillion.

Near-term estimates are lower, but they are no less impressive for a trend that has just come to everybody’s mind.

Bloomberg says the metaverse is a $500-billion opportunity now poised to grow to about $800-billion market opportunity by about 2024.

This value will be unlocked by hardware, software, and content built for the metaverse.

On the hardware side, you need data centers to run it, including graphics systems to handle multiple virtual 3D worlds. On the user side, smartphones with augmented reality (or AR) capabilities and VR goggles like the ones Oculus makes will provide access to the metaverse for its end users.

On the software side, social network platforms and graphics renders will be the underlying infrastructure for the metaverse. Think of the graphics engines running current 3D games and then scale them up to include more and more worlds.

On the content side, gaming is the primary candidate. 3D video games are a metaverse native. They have been mastering and polishing multi-user experiences for decades now.

Turning them into an always-on real-time “game” with its own events and interactions, economy, money, and sets of rules is not as difficult as it sounds. A lot of games will become metaverse worlds.

Some, like Roblox and Fortnite, are already halfway there.

Hardware, software, and the content will be the foundations of this $800-billion economy.

The first to benefit from this market opportunity is likely to be video games and gaming hardware.

Bloomberg estimates that software and services revenue, as well as in-game advertising, could comprise about 70% of the total metaverse market opportunity.

What Other Opportunities Are There?

Live events and advertising could be the next biggest step.

Imagine that you could watch a boxing match… from within the ring…

Or a football game by moving freely between the players.

Any distance, any angle, rendered in real time.

That’s the possibility of metaverse for live sports events.

And Unity, a company that produces video game engines, is working on this technology right now.

Image: a render of Unity’s Metacast engine

This will be the next frontier for the metaverse. Not only creating an always available online world but also moving parts of the real world into it in real time.

Gaming is the first massive metaverse opportunity. And it will likely remain the largest source of revenue in the near-term at least.

Live events are a nascent trend that is in its early stages.

By this point, we hope that you have an idea of the metaverse and its vast potential.

In the future, we will continue covering various aspects of it.

This trend is just beginning, and there will be a lot to talk about.

Thank you for your loyal readership,

The Financial Star team