CES 2022 brought pieces of the metaverse into view

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The grand metaverse that tech enthusiasts talked about last year remains a distant target for the industry, but this week’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas showed off some of its building blocks as they materialize. let start.

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why it matters: The full vision of a shared, 3D digital dimension a la “Ready Player One” is probably still a decade away – but it won’t arrive in one piece out of nowhere. Instead, it will appear in bits and chunks, clunky and disjointed, before being incorporated into something that is both functional and useful.

  • Unless, of course, all this is just another false start for a VR industry that’s been promising us a metaverse or another for three decades.

Here are notable examples CES’s Steps Towards a Metaverse:


be smart: Most visions of the metaverse envision an immersive digital space shared by multiple companies and individuals. Meta’s Andrew Bosworth describes it as the embodied Internet.

  • All the tech giants are investing in various pieces of that future, including Google, Meta, and Apple, along with a number of startups working on pieces of it.
  • While some of the essential technology is available today and other parts are working fine in laboratories, breakthroughs are still needed in the performance technology, miniaturization, battery life and cost of creating headsets that are comfortable, economical and last more than a few hours. can on time.
  • The overarching idea of ​​a single, interoperable metaverse where you can easily move, and carry your stuff, from one company’s turf to the next remains theoretical. Many firms have promised to support that goal, but few have begun to work it into their plans.

yes but: There was also a lot of plain discussion and hype for applying the term “metaverse” to anything even remotely related to virtual or augmented reality.

  • Several CES observers suggested a drinking game that featured the main audience every time the Metaverse was mentioned — but that would have been a recipe for alcohol poisoning.
  • This twitter thread Collected old photos of the Metaverse label’s CES abuses.
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