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Over the last few months, the term metaverse has catapulted from relative obscurity to a buzzword in the tech realm. As enterprises around the globe clamor to take advantage of the technology, the metaverse has proved to be more than a millennial marketing scheme, but the next step in the internet’s evolution.

The convergence of physical, virtual and augmented reality will let users socialize and conduct business in a shared online space. But, as the boundaries between these worlds continue to blur, enterprises will find themselves on the front lines of establishing trust and safety standards and shaping their path forward.

Accenture’s Technology Vision report for 2022 looks at how emerging innovations are redefining the intersection between people and technology.

  •  Web3 — putting the ‘me’ in metaverse

Blockchain is the backbone of Web3, an all-encompassing term for a decentralized internet, where no single entity can control the flow of information online. This means that instead of storing data on central servers, each member of a network will have access to the same data in the form of a distributed ledger.

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When viewed in the context of money, cryptocurrency, the most common blockchain application, will form the foundation of the economic and monetary system in the metaverse.

  •  Programmable world — our planet, personalized

In the programmable world, control, customization and automation will be fully absorbed into the surrounding environment. From coffee pots to alarm systems, these integrated systems can easily detect, learn, and adhere to the complex preferences of its users.

And enterprises will build and deliver these solutions, as well as revamp their own operations to give people the option to decide what they want to see, interact with, and experience — all with little effort and more flexibility than ever before.

  • The unreal — making synthetic authentic

As AI-generated data continues to advance at lightning speed, authenticity is becoming increasingly prized. Since synthetic data can convincingly reflect the physical world, people are no longer interested in whether something is real. Instead, they are evaluating if it’s authentic.

When deployed authentically, synthetic realness can push AI to new frontiers. It has the capability of enhancing the customer experience, managing repetitive tasks, and minimizing manual errors.

  • Computing the impossible — new machines, new possibilities

The advances of quantum computing are among the most radically disruptive trends on the horizon. The emergence of a new class of machines is stretching the boundaries of which problems computers can solve.

While computational theory and hardware isn’t a concept that crosses the minds of most nontechnical executives, it’s something they can’t afford to overlook. It may not be happening tomorrow, but the transformation is well underway, and each new benchmark symbolizes being one step closer to unimaginable enterprise capabilities.

  • The future is now

There was a time when metaverse technology seemed like a far-fetched concept that could manifest sometime in the distant future. But enterprises no longer have the luxury of thinking about it in the abstract anymore.

The metaverse is the culmination of a long-running trend, and while this digital world hasn’t really taken form yet, today’s forward-thinking businesses should already be in test-and-learn mode, ready to take advantage of the growth opportunities that lay ahead.

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