The change in the digital world is the only constant we’ve seen in the past few years. The wave of change brought us blockchain technology, advancements in AI technology, Web 3.0, and the recent hype over the Metaverse. One could argue that the Metaverse is an amalgamation of previous tech advancements. In the midst of them, NFTs have taken the Iron Throne in this virtual world. The lucrative possibilities that NFTs facilitate make it easy to place NFTs at the center of a virtual replica of the real world. Understanding the role and importance of metaverse NFTs brings to light the opportunities we stand to gain in multiple industries.
The Metaverse is a digital universe that expands the boundaries of reality to create a more engaging alternate reality. And one of the primary features of the Metaverse is that it has a full-fledged economy and encompasses both physical and virtual worlds, allowing it to be decentralized. NFTs are considered the ideal choice to run the Metaverse economy because of their interoperability, scarcity, and proven ownership.
The primary link between the Metaverse and NFTs is the relationship between digital assets and how they are valued. Creators can exhibit digital forms of art and property in the Metaverse, and NFTs will be in charge of monetizing such content with proof of ownership. NFTs present many other many valid reasons to be strongly connected to Metaverse.
NFT allow ease of representation for real-world assets in the Metaverse. Its unique nature and the traceability of the token make sure that the trades stay fair and transparent. This also means that users can obtain full ownership of virtual spaces in the Metaverse through NFTs, making it instrumental in virtual real estate.
By holding a specific NFT asset, users can show their support to certain brands or organizations. A community of like-minded supporters can be formed to share experiences and collaborate in the creation process. This can also directly help brand marketing while launching new products or initiatives.
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The scope for NFTs applications is vast, like Merch, wearables, tickets, virtual land, and more. The interoperability offered by NFT further helps users trade seamlessly throughout different virtual worlds. Innovative thinking further opens the opportunities that Metaverse can leverage with NFTs.
Since we’ve glanced through the opportunities it presents, Let’s look at some of the use cases that NFTs display in the virtual world.
E-commerce plays a significant role in the Metaverse. As we know, with present Ecommerce, the genuineness of the product is often a gamble. NFTs can provide a solution as a source to buyers since they include creator data in the blockchain. As a result, businesses or individuals can sell their products as NFTs, and users can buy them confidently. Moreover, any disputes over the product can be cleared by proof of ownership and other data that NFT holds.
Luxury products can be bought and sold effectively with NFTs in the Metaverse. When a consumer purchases a product, they can use NFT to claim full ownership of that product. It will assist people in thoroughly verifying the legitimacy of a product before purchasing it from the online store in the metaverse. Consumers can interact with the product through a combination of augmented reality and virtual reality. Balenciaga’s partnership with Fortnite is a good example of luxury brands utilizing NFTS. Balenciaga is set to sell some of their collections as skins for the Fortnite avatars.
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Metaverse is heavily reliant on virtual real estate. Many virtual worlds or games inside this ecosystem are selling their virtual space. NFTs are used to represent these virtual locations. If a user purchases a real estate NFT, they can use it to set up a virtual shop or organize an event.
Educational institutions can construct virtual classes for users in the Metaverse and can use NFT to provide documentation of their student’s academic credentials. It can also represent a student’s attendance, other degrees, specific skill sets, etc., allowing businesses to quickly and easily validate their credentials. The certification for these courses can be issued as NFTs, giving undeniable proof of ownership to the student.
Within the Metaverse, NFTs play a unique function in the gaming niche. Several gaming platforms have already developed their own NFT-based play-to-earn tokens to power their governance systems and improve their profits and users’ earnings. NFTs can assist players in acquiring in-game assets, which they can then sell or exchange on other NFT marketplaces to generate cash.
Typically, counterfeit tickets or passes are a major problem at many events. However, if the ticketing process is tokenized, a single ticket will have a single owner. No one else may use that ticket to access an event or replicate it to sell to others. Users can trade their tickets in the Metaverse; however, each ticket is owned by a particular person.
One of the major problems in the art world is the forgery of artwork. Art galleries and museums in Metaverse can tokenize original artworks and display them in virtual spaces/auction houses. Because a blockchain does not allow for the duplicate or alteration of records, anyone purchasing art from Metaverse may always be certain of the product’s provenance and validity.
Many brands and enterprises have realized the potential of NFTs in Metaverse and have made strategic moves to strike the first mover advantage. These brands have taken bold steps that have yielded good results.
Let’s start with Adidas. Adidas introduced the “Into the Metaverse” NFT line, which includes virtual wearables that consumers may use in the Metaverse and tangible clothes to match. All 30,000 NFTs were sold in one afternoon, earning them more than $22 million in NFT sales. They’ve also collaborated with Prada to introduce a collection of clothes and accessory products bringing the best of both brands, which will be minted as NFTs on the Polygon network.
Gucci made headlines when a single bag sold for $4,000 on Roblox through “Gucci Garden,” a pop-up world selling the brand’s goods.
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Nike approached the Metaverse by creating an immersive area in Roblox called Nikeland, which includes Nike buildings, arenas, and fields where players may participate in mini-games. They went the extra mile by acquiring RTFKT Studios, a digital sneaker producer.
Ralph Lauren also took a space in the Metaverse and opened its new Roblox store in December 2021, available 24 hours a day and stocked with winter apparel in the Metaverse for under $5.
Many brands collaborate with popular gaming platforms to launch their brand into the Metaverse space as an NFT. Balenciaga is one among them. The brand created four virtual outfits and different Fortnite avatar accessories.
Burberry announced a collaboration with Mythical Games to launch NFTs in their main player-owned blockchain game, Blankos Block Party. Uniqlo has collaborated with Microsoft to sell virtual clothing for Minecraft gamers.
The NFT and Metaverse have the potential to shift the lifestyle of the masses. Brands, enterprises, and governments have their share in the Metaverse. Japan leads the way with the Prime Minister Fumio Kishida’s policy speech in October 2022 outlining their plans to invest in NFTs and Metaverse services. The government has reportedly promoted investments in digital technology, even providing tax incentives to companies, to popularise and foresee the opportunities of Web 3 and the Metaverse. The future of NFTs can thus be secured with the policymakers to launch nations to a digital future.
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