Exploring the Impact of Metaverse on Product Innovation

25 Apr, 2023
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Metaverse was one of the fast-developing technologies until AI took over. It was expected to disrupt several domains including education and training, insurance, health-tech, fin-tech, prop-tech, etc. Many predicted that with work going remote due to the pandemic, virtual meetings in the Metaverse will become a norm.

Some predicted that VR Electronic goods are the next cell phones. And these hi-tech immersive tech gadgets were expected to revolutionize education and training systems, gaming, and many other domains that benefit from immersive experiences.

Despite promising initial growth and ideas, metaverse technologies didn’t grow as fast as they were predicted to grow. The reasons are many. Probably, with the overload of screens, post-pandemic, we’re seeking more real-life experiences and not digital ones. VR sets didn’t become as common as smartphones. Creating VR experiences and products is neither a simple nor an affordable affair.

Many think VR technologies are recreational with no meaningful purpose. However, VR and other immersive technologies are digitally transforming and enhancing various critical domains like health care.

The technologies are very relevant for two reasons. One, they still promise new advancements in various domains like Health-Tech, Prop-Tech, Insure-Tech, Retail-Tech, EdTech, etc. Two, the digital electronics ecosystem is expected to catch up with the predictions and expectations and bring new and sleek gadgets that provide more immersive experiences. 

Software Product Innovators interested in immersive technologies can consider two paths. They may choose to develop critical applications that target niche markets the diverse sectors, as already discussed in one of our earlier blogs. They may take the other road and develop immersive experiences, products, and platforms, in the metaverse to reach a wider audience as the usage of AR/VR gadgets increase.

Though these two paths are different, the success mantras are the same. They need to serve a purpose, create a new experience, add value, simplify a task, generate new markets, and garner profits and growth.

The Intersection of the metaverse and Web 3.0

Advancements in Web 3.0 coincide with new developments in technologies like AI, ML, Blockchain, IoT, etc. With Web 3.0, the virtual world is expected to connect many more users without compromising their safety and privacy. It is still in the initial stages and hence we can’t yet predict clearly how it might shape up in the future. However, its principles of decentralization, safety, and privacy are at its core.

These principles will form the basis of Metaverse Technologies too. The next-gen product innovations in the virtual world will enable seamless virtual interactions through digital avatars in virtual spaces. People can buy virtual assets using secure digital payments backed by blockchain technologies.

In early 2022, JPMorganChase, the US investment bank, opened its first branch in the Metaverse through the virtual world platform, Decentraland. Secure payments, digital interactions, collaborations, without a controlling authority are already possible in the metaverse. However, they will become more common, seamless, and immersive.

How Metaverse Coincides with Product Development

Collaborations in the Metaverse

The Metaverse can provide an excellent platform where team members from anywhere in the world can work together in a shared virtual environment. This can help enhance the speed and efficiency of the product development process.

Virtual User Testing

Metaverse technologies can provide a unique way to test software products with users. With the Metaverse, users can be immersed in a virtual environment that simulates a real-world scenario. This enables them to provide feedback on the software product’s usability and functionality in a way that is close to real-world use. This kind of testing provides valuable insights that can improve the software product’s design and user experience.

Virtual Training

Metaverse technologies can be used to provide virtual training for software product users. Instead of reading a manual or attending a training session, users can be immersed in a virtual environment that simulates the software product’s use case. This kind of training can be more engaging, effective, and efficient and is especially useful in mission-critical applications related to defence or healthcare.

Virtual Sales and Marketing

Metaverse can provide a unique platform for selling and marketing software products. Companies can create virtual environments that showcase their products in a way that is interactive and immersive. This kind of marketing can be more engaging than traditional methods and can provide a more profound understanding of the product’s value proposition. It is quite helpful in creative domains like fashion, architecture, interior design, etc.

The Future ahead

Any current description of Metaverse might seem like a snippet from a futuristic sci-fi movie. Experiences in the metaverse are expected to get more natural. Though we now can enter a virtual world and view it, it may be possible soon to connect it with our other senses like taste, smell, and touch. We may be able to feel and experience objects in the virtual world in many more ways.

Immersive metaverse technologies will indeed find applications in diverse domains. They provide new opportunities for software product development. However, they may also pose threats to humans. Since the sector is in a nascent stage, it is a good opportunity to grow amidst lesser competition. However, product innovators shouldn’t forget that the backbone of their products is not technology, but the purpose they serve and the values they adhere to.

Web 3.0 was envisioned as an answer to the pitfalls of Web 2.0. Hence it the metaverse innovations too must align with the ideas of Web3. With novel technologies like the metaverse, the responsibility to create a safer virtual world is on product owners, developers, and other stakeholders.

Companies that embrace these technologies can gain a significant competitive advantage by enhancing their software product development process, providing better user experiences, and reaching their customers in new and engaging ways. Tech companies like Siemens are already trying out new business and tech opportunities in the virtual worlds.

These metaverse technologies provide immersive virtual environments where avatars and digital twins can use IoT and real-time analytics to bring innovative engineering solutions that can safely solve real-world problems. ISVs in Health-Tech, PropTech, EduTech, RetailTech, InsurTech, etc, should start considering Metaverse technologies, leverage them to build solutions in any of the four pillars of the Metaverse: virtual spaces, virtual assets, virtual interactions, and digital payments.

As a company offering software product development services, we are excited about the possibilities that the Metaverse brings to our industry, and we look forward to helping our clients leverage these technologies to create innovative software products that meet their customer’s needs. Are you keen on incorporating immersive technologies into your products? Do you want to make your products web3-ready? Along with product engineering services, coMakeIT offers expert guidance in novel technologies.

For more details please talk to us.

Divya Prathima
The author was a java Developer at coMakeIT before turning into a stay-at-home-mom. She slowed down to make art, tell stories, read books on fiction, philosophy, science, art-history, write about science, parenting, and observe technology trends. She loves to write and aspires to write simple and understandable articles someday like Yuval Noah Harari. We are very happy to have her back at coMakeIT and contribute to our relevant and thought provoking content.

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