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The term “metaverse” has recently entered common parlance thanks to the recent announcement that Facebook has changed its name to Meta. This was great for the company as it provided millions in free promotion for Facebook/Meta and its growing range of products with every news outlet in the world covering it.

However, for the wider public, it was mostly just a confusing experience that provided more questions than answers. In fact, search data has revealed that of the 2.62 million searches for the word “metaverse” that were made in October, almost all of them were of people trying to understand what it actually is.

In this vacuum of knowledge, theories, and suggestions of what the metaverse could do for different industries and how it will change the world.

Bloomberg recently reported how fashion companies, crypto enthusiasts, and tech startups are coming together to create virtual fashion items that could be used in the metaverse.

Source: Bloomberg Quicktake

Within this report, the definition of metaverse was extended to refer to just about any digital world, including social media accounts, video games, and other similar platforms. The most immediate use is in gaming since avatars and playable characters are already highly customisable on most platforms.

Could the Metaverse be iGaming’s Next Technological Advancement?

The iGaming industry has always been at the forefront of technology. In the 1990s, early pioneers combined new developments like the internet and digital payment services to create the first online casinos.

In the years that followed, iGaming companies have continued to embrace advancements like HTML5, smartphones, and video streaming to create innovative products and new ways for their customers to play.

Today, this means that there are versions of popular classics like roulette that appeal to almost everyone. While they all use the same wheel with 37 (or 38) pockets, they offer different features. For example, the multiplayer mode lets several people play together while live dealer games include a video feed of a human dealer instead of just digital graphics.

With this in mind, it seems pretty reasonable to assume the metaverse could be the next big thing in iGaming.

What Would an iGaming Metaverse Look Like?

While the definition of metaverse varies, the most commonly accepted one is that it is a “persistent synchronous environment” that we all access through the internet. Most people assume this to be a 3D world, though some argue it can also contain 2D elements.

Early examples of a 3D metaverse include Second Life, a video game where players create a digital avatar that they can customise and use to explore an open digital world.

This could easily be applied to iGaming as it could help to create an even more immersive digital environment for players to enjoy.

Instead of a series of menus to make deposits, choose a game, and select limits, a metaverse online casino could be a virtual reality gaming floor with a cashier’s desk, a bank of video slot games, and rows of tables.

Players could freely roam the gaming floor, interacting with other patrons and casino staff. When they find the game they want to play, they could sit down, put their chips on the table, and begin placing bets.

A metaverse online casino could be designed to closely mirror the gaming floors we see in the integrated resorts we see in cities like Las Vegas and Macau or it could be made to look completely different, perhaps with different theming options like underwater, space, or wild west.

Players could also be free customisable. Like the fashion NFT developers that were reported on by Bloomberg, players could purchase outfits, accessories, and other customisations for their casino avatar. This would create a more diverse world for those within the game as they’d see a diverse range of people, just like in a land-based casino.

This could be another source of revenue for iGaming companies too as they could open digital gift shops within the casino metaverse where players could purchase souvenirs, clothing, and other items.

This is likely a long way off though. Technologies like virtual reality are still maturing and the agreed definition of what the metaverse actually is is still to be defined. That said, the iGaming industry’s track record of embracing new ideas shows us we can expect it to be at the forefront of this new digital world.

 

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