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TikTok’s Parent Company Set For a Metaverse Showdown Against Facebook

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ByteDance, the company behind the trending short videos application, TikTok is working towards challenging Zukerburg’s Meta Universe in the up-and-coming metaverse industry.

According to an announcement from ByteDance earlier this month, the company has begun to establish manifold changes, starting from laying down formal structures that will distinguish categories of employees based on their departments. This restructure came as an attempt to gain global recognition in other arenas after achieving exceptional success with TikTok.

Is ByteDance Following Facebook’s former growth strategy to Replace it?

While TikTok has established its dominance in the short video applications sphere, however, ByteDance has greater ambitions, one of which is to overpower former Facebook, and now Meta platform and take its place on the throne of Web3. ByteDance plans to continue building upon TikTok’s revenue-generating capabilities, and at the same time, use that success to expand into the Western markets with a broader suite of apps and services. One could speculate that ByteDance is following Facebook’s growth strategy of setting up the base with one core application, exactly like Facebook did in the early 2000s. Later on, using the revenue gains and market confidence from that one app to further branch out, which is similar to what Facebook did by acquiring WhatsApp and Instagram, along with becoming a single sign-in source for other services.

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“ByteDance’s overseas layout is not only limited to the short video industry, but also includes some upstream news and music platforms…ByteDance has great ambitions for the overseas markets, and its competition with Facebook has become more apparent.”, Ashley Dudarenok, a China marketing expert and founder of digital marketing agencies Alarice and ChoZan told Wired.

When it comes to TikTok’s success there is no doubt that the application has outperformed itself despite backlash from Chinese regulators. Last month, the viral short video application entered the Non-Fungible Token (NFT) market with the launch of its first-ever NFT series “TikTok Top Moments”. The series immediately gained a positive response from the community and became a big hit. It will be exciting to see what is next on TikTok’s parent company, ByteDance’s checklist.

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Here Are the Top 5 Metaverse Altcoins With the Most Potential, According to Crypto Analyst Austin Arnold

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Altcoin Daily host and crypto trader Austin Arnold is naming the metaverse tokens he believes have the most potential in terms of fundamentals.

The crypto trader tells his 1.13 million YouTube subscribers that he’s looking at peer-to-peer video delivery blockchain Theta Network (THETA), which he says is an essential infrastructure for the development of the metaverse.

“As metaverses and metaverse-based ‘virtual live’ events and gaming continue to grow, Theta is positioned as the key infrastructure to power them across the technology stack. Their high concurrent user count of metaverse live events are a perfect fit for a peer-to-peer video and data delivery and showcase the need for the Theta protocol.” 

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Next on the list is Gaia Everworld (GAIA), a multi-region fantasy game backed by blockchain scaling solution Polygon (MATIC). According to Arnold, Gaia Everworld is an immersive game where players can explore and build kingdoms. Arnold says GAIA has potential because of its unique technology and strong backing.

“We can see some of the big names backing this project right here – Polygon, AU21 Capital, Bullperks, EnjinStarter…definitely a differentiator. Also a differentiator: the technology. They have Unity 3D, they have the Unreal Engine, and of course, [it’s] built on Polygon.”

Moving on, Arnold turns his attention to Star Atlas (ATLAS), a Solana-based space-themed adventure game featuring non-fungible tokens (NFTs). According to Arnold, ATLAS is on the radar because of its rapidly growing fanbase.

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“One of the big reasons I feel Star Atlas is a metaverse to watch is because of how fast the community is growing. The Star Atlas Discord server has just reached 100,000 members. This is a great achievement for the community [and] the team.”

Other metaverse tokens noted for their growing popularity are play-to-earn blockchain-based game Axie Infinity (AXS), and virtual reality platform Decentraland (MANA), which rank numbers one and four, respectively, on the list of top gaming projects with the highest social volumes.

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What Are The Upgradable Nfts And How Can They Benefit Artists, Brands And Metaverses?

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It was only recently that the world caught on to yet another craze, this time in the form of a new type of blockchain-based assets called non-fungible tokens, or NFTs. Since then, the interest for all things NFT has kept growing at neck breaking speed, spurring countless digital art pieces (some more bizarre than others), and grabbing headlines for their multi-million-dollar valuations. And then, of course, we have the NFT-based games, like Axie Infinity, generating $220.3 million in monthly sales and recently raising $152 million in Series B funding round.

It’s clear that NFTs have seen a spectacular rise. As a rule, such a success attracts attention of innovators from across the industries, thinking how to expand the applications of new technologies and make it even more lucrative. This time is not an exception. We are now leaving the lullaby of NFTs about to witness the emergence of dozens of variations of non-fungible tokens serving all the imaginable needs of businesses and consumers. In fact, the first bunch of new “hot” NFTs is already here. Those are upgradable, time-limited and non-hashed. They seem like perfect tools for artists, brands, and metaverse – a trending concept of a shared multidimensional digital environment, creation of which has been undertaken by Facebook, Fortnite, Sensorium, Roblox among several other players.

So what are these novel NFT types and what exactly can they do for a metaverse?

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Driving Collaborations In Digital Space

As the name suggests, upgradable NFTs evolve over time, allowing various players to transform the NFTs and their corresponding content, while refraining its ownership. Such a feature comes in very handy for a whole range of entertainment industries. For creators, this is a promising advancement allowing, for example, an artist or a musician to legitimately take on another creator’s artworks as the basis for their own. This means that two (or even more) pieces of content can come together into one without the legal and creative headaches we so often see in the non-crypto world. Similarly, global fashion houses can now launch collaborations without the unnecessary bureaucracy or the involvement of third parties. After all, Valentino, Louis Vuitton, and Burberry were among the first companies to embrace crypto, issuing NFTs out of all-digital collections and increasingly experimenting with metaverses through VR and AR in the past year.

Facilitating Smart Contracts

Non-hashed NFTs permit users to save text details right on the smart contract without the need to write a single line of code. As a concept associated with high technologies and futuristic environments, metaverse implies convenience and lack of bureaucracy. Non-hashed NFTs will significantly facilitate the administrative procedures among all the metaverse’s participants from users and content creators to developers and investors. 

Boosting Users’ Engagement

Time-limited NFTs serve as a powerful gamification tool to boost users’ engagement. With this type of NFTs, companies could tokenize tickets for virtual events and enhance them with advanced access and expiry settings, permitting attendees to exchange them in the secondary market freely, or keep them as collectibles featuring certain rarity levels. For example, Fortnite could have used them as an additional long-term tool to engage the attendees of its recent Ariana Grande’s virtual concert, some of whom complained the event ended too soon. Another promising application of time-limited NFT applies to metaverses, where in-game assets could be tied to specific timeframes.

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The Origins

Noteworthy, the above types of NFTs were in fact unveiled by metaverse developers from Sensorium, the company behind the Sensorium Galaxy metaverse built in collaboration with Jay-Z’s Roc Nation and chart topping artists like David Guetta and Armin Van Buren. Upgradable, time-limited and non-hashed are all the features of Wakatta, Sensorium’s new blockchain geared specifically for the needs of the entertainment industry. As announced at Token 2049 in London, Sensorium Galaxy will integrate the Wakatta blockchain within a few months to allow users mint virtual beings as NFTs and monetize their creations through a transparent marketplace. According to Alex Blagirev, Wakatta’s Project Lead, – the Substrate-based blockchain will offer low transaction fees of $0.001 and capacity to handle thousands of transactions per second.

Market On The Rise

Although we are yet to see upgradable, time-limited and non-hashed NFTs in action, their future seems very promising as the market for non-fungible tokens has witnessed unprecedented success. The versatility of NFTs and the fact that they can be integrated across a wide variety of industries has seen investors flocking to the technology. In the first quarter of 2021 alone, the NFT market saw a 2,100 surge when compared to the last quarter of 2020, with sales of these tokens reaching over $2 billion.

The numbers underscore the potential of NFTs – and blockchains are seizing the moment. Take Flow, developed by Dapper Labs following the company’s partnership with the NBA that has led to NBA Top Shot, a widely popular marketplace for digital basketball collectibles. This has netted the company over $500 million in the first half of 2021. Recently, the company revealed that it would be extending its NFT services to the NFL and other major sports leagues, including Spain’s LaLiga.

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Other companies following the same recipe include iconic brands like Marvel whose first foray into the world of NFTs included Spider-Man and Captain American digital collectibles. Spiderman NFTs worth some $4 million were sold out within 24 hours of launching and other releases have been equally successful.

NFT-marketplaces have enjoyed a similar boom. According to a recent study by DappRadar, the top 30 NFT marketplaces combined have grossed a total of more than $11.53 billion. For instance, in June 2021 alone, OpenSea sold $160 million in digital assets, having a 45x increase in volume growth during the first half of 2021. MakersPlace generated more than $100 million in sales in the past year and witnessed Beeple’s artwork being sold for $69.3 million on its platform.

Bright Future

According to a recent study by CB Insights, there are currently over 90 companies involved in metaverse creation. As more brands will turn their attention to metaverse – whether building one or entering it to sell its products and services – the demand for NFTs and its numerous various will continue to grow. Overall, NFTs remain a fairly new technology, and more importantly, a niche opportunity for businesses, investors and users alike. That’s the momentum new players, like Wakatta, are hoping to ride out in this newly-minted market.

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Here’s how Microsoft plans to tap the Metaverse realm

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Satya Nadella, the CEO of Microsoft, tweeted about the latest plans of his company for activities in the metaverse sector. It seems the tech giant has ambitious plans, and they start in the workspace sector with innovations for disrupting the online meetings first.

Microsoft can become a great player in the metaverse sector because of the numerous milestones it has achieved, especially in workspace management and tools.

The company has a huge user base, especially in the enterprise section. Most of them use the complete suite of tools and applications for workspace communications and also office tools.

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Now the tech giant plans to move further and combine these services with the metaverse concept offering a new world.

Satya Nadella tweeted about the new world and plans of his company for this new era:

“The metaverse is here, and it’s not only transforming how we see the world but how we participate in it – from the factory floor to the meeting room.”

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The tweet comes with a video showcasing what Microsoft plans to offer as a metaverse solution. Nadella talks about the current state of the physical and digital world that are joining each other in many aspects. He says the metaverse can be the platform that connects these two worlds by bringing computing to the real world and integrating the real world with the computer version.

As the tweet says, the metaverse era will change everything from the factory floors to meeting rooms. In the new world, people can bring their complete presence to the digital world and freely select their type of interactions. Interacting with digital versions of real-world concepts isn’t limited to camera views, and people can really feel themselves in the spaces, factory floor, for example.

Mesh for Microsoft Teams is the name of a new product from the company that allows more real-looking meetings and interactions for users. Nadella believes this new product is the start of the metaverse journey for his company to offer a disruptive experience to users. The video continues with a sample of how Mesh will renovate the meetings and gatherings in a metaverse-like experience.

The metaverse concept has been in the tech world for quite a while. Many small teams and projects were talked about and worked on it. But when Facebook announced real plans to enter this sector and even rebranded to Meta, many more realized the potentials of this new world. Many metaverse tokens experienced price jumps, and now we see other big tech companies like Microsoft embracing it, too.

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