In science fiction, the "metaverse" is a hypothetical iteration of the Internet as a single, universal, and immersive virtual world that is facilitated by the use of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) headsets. In colloquial usage, a "metaverse" is a network of 3D virtual worlds focused on social connection. The metaverse is a vision of how the next generation of the internet will operate. A metaverse will be an improved digital environment where it is possible to move seamlessly between work, play, shopping, socializing and creativity in one digital landscape. What form that landscape will take is a subject of debate. Firms such as Meta (Facebook) are investing heavily in an immersive experience, where users with wearable hardware discard reality for a purely virtual world, interacting via avatars. Statista’s Advertising & Media Markets Insights estimates that worldwide metaverse revenue will stand at $490 billion in 2030. This is a comparatively conservative forecast. Other analyst companies assume a market volume of between approximately 750 and 1,700 billion U.S. dollars.
The term metaverse is defined as a virtual world or a collection of virtual worlds that exist in a common digital space and that users can access over the internet. Metaverses include applications of virtual reality, augmented reality and other immersive technologies. It includes the e-businesses known today and it will probably facilitate more interactive and dynamic e-commerce. The biggest revenue drivers for metaverses are e-commerce and gaming. In addition, metaverses also offer new opportunities for revenue creation in the segments of education, entertainment, health and fitness and even telecommuting. Metaverse e-commerce sales alone could grow to more than $200 billion by 2030 from currently just around $20 billion. Gaming is expected to grow even more, from just around $10 billion as of now to around $163 billion in 2030. The next biggest applications for metaverse revenue are health & fitness, workplace and education. Statista’s Metaverse Market Report provides more information and data on the subject.