Facebook changed its name to Meta to fully bet on Meta Universe, which set off a meta-universe fever in the Internet industry.
For a time, almost all Internet companies were talking about this not-so-new concept, and some companies even caught on to the hot spot.
Domestic Internet companies have also started to follow up quickly, and their enthusiasm for Metaverse can be easily seen from the trademark application of Metaverse.
According to the data from Tianyan Check, as of now (November 26), there have been nearly 6,400 trademark applications with “Meta Universe” in the name, and more than 960 companies have participated in the application.
It is worth mentioning that before September 22, the number of applicant companies was only more than 130; on October 22, the number was about 400. In other words, the number of companies applying for the Yuan Universe trademark has increased exponentially in the past two months.
In September, well-known companies in various fields including Tencent , iQiyi , Xiaohongshu , Ideal Auto, Nubia and other fields all applied for Metaverse related trademarks; in October, companies such as Huanrui Century and NetEase joined the ranks of applications; in November, Companies such as Xiaopeng Motors and Weilai Motors also “joined the game.” However, the current status of Metaverse-related trademarks is mostly under application, and the successful registration is still unknown.
So what are the views and products of each company on Metaverse? Sanyan Finance will take stock of the meta-universe layout of Internet giants.
As early as May 2019, Tencent and Roblox reached a strategic cooperation and obtained domestic agency rights. More than half a year later, Tencent participated in the investment in Roblox and became one of the shareholders.
According to incomplete statistics, as of October this year, Tencent has directly or indirectly invested in 67 game companies, including an investment of US$520 million in Roblox in January this year, and games are considered to be one of the entrances to the meta universe.
In the performance conference call on November 10, Tencent President Liu Chiping said, “I believe Tencent has a lot of technology and capabilities to explore and develop Metaverse. For example, we have rich experience in games, social media, and artificial intelligence related fields. .”
Earlier news broke that Tianmei Studio is preparing for a cross-platform 3A masterpiece, which will target the virtual community “Oasis” in the movie “Number One Player”.
In 2020, Tencent’s internal publication “Three Views”, Ma Huateng first proposed the concept of “True Internet” at that time.
At the Techo Day of Tencent Ecological Conference on November 4 this year, Zhang Zhengyou, Chief Scientist of Tencent and Director of Tencent AI Lab and Robotics X Lab, further elaborated: “True” is the real world, and “True” corresponds to the virtual world or digital world. .
Zhang Zhengyou pointed out that all-true interconnection means connecting everything and getting through the virtual and the reality. “Full truth” means that the virtual world is inseparable from the real world. Online and offline more fully integrated, physical and electronic means deeper integration, which will be more closely connected to the people, information, goods, services, manufacturing together .
In October, the Baidu VR 2.0 industrialization platform based on Baidu Brain was officially released . The platform includes two major platforms: VR content platform and VR interactive platform. The former revolves around material collection, editing management, content distribution, and collection equipment/material/unified agreement; the latter It focuses on meta-universe scenes, virtual avatars, multi-person interaction, VR headsets/social networks, and explores more possibilities of three-dimensional information in the meta-universe.
This month, Baidu launched a social app called “Xiyang” in the Apple App Store and Android App Store, to force Yuan Universe.
Baidu said that it will create a multi-person interactive virtual world with identity, across virtual and display, and lasting forever.
However, the actual experience of Sanyan Finance feels that this is more like a test product. Although users can create their own avatars, the app can basically only be described as “visit” once. You can visit the three scenes of Fengtang Art Layer, Baidu World Congress, and Fresh Milk Experience Hall. There is basically no interactive content.
At the Baidu AI Open Day event this month, Baidu Vice President Ma Jie shared his views on Meta Universe.
He said: Metaverse is essentially a process of virtualizing and digitizing the real world. The development of Metaverse is gradual. It is finally formed by the continuous integration and evolution of many tools and platforms under the support of shared infrastructure.
Ma Jie believes that the three most difficult problems need to be solved at the moment, namely, real-time high-brush immersive experience picture effects, multi-person interaction algorithm support, and high-cost VR content production, which makes it impossible to form an ecological closed loop.
In late October, Alibaba established the XR laboratory to explore the future operating system under the next-generation cloud-network-end convergence architecture and focus on the research of a new generation of mobile computing platforms. The laboratory mainly conducts research on AR (augmented reality) and VR-related technologies, which are closely related to the meta-universe.
Tan Ping, head of the XR laboratory of Alibaba Dharma Academy , believes that Metaverse is the entire Internet on VR/AR glasses. AR/VR glasses are the next-generation mobile computing platform that will soon be popularized, and Metaverse is the presentation of the Internet industry on this new platform.
Tan Ping pointed out that from this perspective, the scope of Metaverse is very broad, including social networking, e-commerce, education, games, and even payment. The various Internet applications that we are familiar with today will have their own ways of presentation in the meta-universe.
The XR laboratory of Ali Dharma Academy also showed some examples, including Tmall holographic store, virtual home improvement and so on.
In addition, Tmall hosted the first Yuan universe art exhibition, inviting 15 brands including Wuliangye, Xiaopeng Automobile, and Burberry to participate.
At the “2021 China Online Media Forum Industry Forum” on November 25, Xiao Lihua, Vice President of Alibaba Group and Dean of Alibaba Cloud Research Institute, said that with cloud and Internet integration and innovation, cloud-centric AR/VR and meta universe Immersive future media may become the new normal.
Xiao Lihua said that the core driving force of digital intelligence innovation lies in the five aspects of computing, data, AI, terminal, and security. For example, in terms of computing, the cloud computing power can support the transmission, production, and storage of media; in terms of data, the “information center and brain” of the media is built through a one-stop data processing platform; in terms of AI, through Technologies such as intelligent algorithms and big data can greatly improve processing efficiency and efficiently complete production and release; on the terminal, cloud + 5G + XR technology has built the cornerstone of a new digital world of network media and opened media meta-universe innovation; in terms of security , Technological innovation can guarantee content security, data security, and system security, thereby safeguarding the healthy development of the media industry.
In terms of Metaverse , JD is also trying to integrate with shopping.
During this year’s Double Eleven, JD.com used the virtual IP anchor “VIVI Zihan” throughout the live broadcast to interact with everyone in the virtual live room in real time, bringing a digital shopping experience.
Users can watch directly on mobile phones and computers. If they wear VR glasses, they can also walk into the live broadcast room to interact with the anchor at zero distance . They can also pick up virtual goods for try-on and 360-degree viewing.
This method of live streaming by virtual anchors is indeed very novel. But whether it can be called meta-universe shopping is still to be discussed.
Earlier, there were reports that regarding the landing of Metaverse, NetEase stated that it has been recruiting positions such as builders for virtual scene construction and face-squeezing for virtual characters.
In NetEase’s third-quarter earnings conference call, NetEase’s founder and CEO Ding Lei said, “ NetEase is ready for Metaverse’s technology and planning. When the time comes, “NetEase may run faster than anyone else. “
It is understood that at present, NetEase has launched Yaotai immersive activity system, AI virtual human anchor, planetary blockchain and other meta-universal concept products, and has invested in a number of innovative companies in the virtual human field.
However, Zhou Hongyi is still skeptical of the meta-universe concept.
In the CCTV dialogue program broadcast on the evening of November 20th, Zhou Hongyi said that the concept of meta universe has been very hot recently, and many people have found new ways to collect money.
He believes that first, the virtual reality of meta-universe fantasy requires time; second, Facebook’s fantasy does not represent the future, but the decline of mankind. “If everyone lives in an illusory space, it will not give humanity Society brings real development”.
Talking about the ultimate form of the meta universe, Zhou Hongyi said that the meta universe is a world where the physical world, virtual world, and human society are highly integrated.
He explained, “I always adhere to materialism. This world is material. With the development of digitalization, we have to build a digital twin world based on the real world, which objectively reflects the material world. If we create a real reaction material The digital model of the world’s energy movement, and continues to improve, this technology can undoubtedly promote the better development of human society. It can help mankind understand the world more comprehensively, reflect the material world, after all, the purpose of science is to better understand The objective world is to transform the world in this way. And mankind still has to solve the energy problem, solve the problem of food, work, and live in the material world.”
According to reports, the relevant person in charge of Xiaomi said in response to the company’s layout of Metaverse that Xiaomi is concerned about the opportunities surrounding Metaverse and has made a lot of relevant technical reserves. It has made relevant investments in mobile phones, videos, displays, etc. Related preparations.
In September of this year, Xiaomi mobile phone officially announced a new product-Xiaomi Smart Glasses Explorer Edition. The smart glasses will use MicroLED light-waveguide technology, which allows images to be displayed on the display screen at the front of the glasses.
The official introduction shows that there is not much difference in appearance between this smart glasses and ordinary glasses, and the weight is only 51g, but it supports special AI functions such as calling, taking pictures, translation, and navigation.
This “conceptual new product” is believed to reflect to a certain extent Xiaomi’s attitude to participate in the meta universe.
Huawei recently released the “Star Tower”, an AR interactive experience app based on Cyberverse, a virtual and real fusion technology.
According to reports, through the “starlight tower”, the nine-color deer can travel through time and space in the Huawei campus, and the tower carrying starlight energy will stand on the gleaming lake. Entering this world, the Dimensional Wall will be completely broken, and reality and virtual will be integrated.
The “Star Tower” of Huawei River Map provides a variety of LBS AR gameplay. Participants can see a fusion of reality and virtual world when they enter the App, where they can collect energy, search for treasure chests, find NPCs, occupy energy towers, and fight bosses in team battles to achieve the final victory.
Huawei released the Huawei VR glasses 6DoF game set on November 17. In terms of the VR game ecology, Huawei allows users to play more PC-ecological VR games through the PC VR assistant.
Recently, the byte beating its Pico apply for registration of the trademark “Pico yuan universe.” This is interpreted by the outside world as a sign of bytes entering the meta-universe.
It is understood that Pico was established in April 2015 and was acquired by ByteDance in August 2021. The company is committed to VR research and development, virtual reality content and applications.
However, Zhu Jun, Vice President of ByteDance Products and Strategy, responded that the registration of related trademarks is mainly to prevent the Pico brand from being preemptively registered for the hype of the “Meta Universe” concept, which is a protective registration.
Zhu Jun said: “ByteDance is optimistic about the future applications of VR/AR technology in office, learning, video and other fields, but this has nothing to do with the concept of metaverse. We have always been cautious about particularly grand and very abstract concepts. Internally, too. The team is required to avoid using such concepts and maintain a down-to-earth style to carry out specific work.”
Zhu Jun said that the current key in the VR/AR field is to continue to find good application scenarios, while strengthening the research and development of software and hardware algorithms to improve performance, accuracy and interactive experience.
In this month’s earnings conference call, Chen Rui, CEO of Station B, talked about Meta universe.
He said, “If you hear the concept of meta-universe now, and then enter or deploy these companies in meta-universe, they should be too late. I think that among these elements, whether it is a social system or an ecosystem, it is not months or months. It can be deployed in one or two years.”
He believes that there is a very important thing in the concept of meta universe, that is, it needs to have a self-circulating content ecology. The concept of meta universe cannot be done independently by any company. Therefore, in this product system, there must be a group of people who create content in depth and can profit from the content created in this system.
In his opinion, Meta Universe is actually a long-term goal. All discussions about Meta Universe are at the capital and media level. I hardly hear anyone who actually makes products discuss this. It requires breakthroughs in products and technologies. Only then can we realize this concept, not in the last two or three years.
Facebook’s name change is the biggest bet on Meta Universe.
When Facebook changed its name, Zuckerberg issued an open letter stating, “We are at the beginning of the next chapter of the Internet, and this is also the next chapter of our company. The next platform will be more immersive-a physical one. The Internet, you can experience it instead of just looking at it. We call it the meta universe, and it will touch every product we build.
Zuckerberg looked forward to the future of Metaverse, “We hope that in the next ten years, Metaverse will cover 1 billion people, carry hundreds of billions of dollars in digital commerce, and provide employment opportunities for millions of creators and developers. “
Meta is now one of the biggest players in the meta universe concept, investing a lot of money and manpower in hardware, software, and even content ecology.
At the 2021 Facebook Connect conference, Meta revealed that it will launch a high-end headset internally code-named Project Cambria and XR glasses code-named Project Nazare next year.
In addition to the previous Oculus series of products, Meta has gradually enriched its own hardware product line and different product types.
In terms of R&D investment, Meta will invest US$10 billion in Facebook Reality Labs, focusing on AR/VR product development. In addition, Meta also announced at the conference that it will invest 15 billion yuan to cultivate Metaverse content creators.
In propaganda, Apple never uses the concept of meta universe. In the eyes of Apple CEO Cook, this can only be regarded as “augmented reality.”
In September of this year, Cook accepted an exclusive interview with Time magazine and talked about his own views on leadership, corporate value and new technologies.
Cook said, “I am very excited about what augmented reality can bring. This is a superposition of the virtual world and the real world, and it will not distract you from the real world and the relationship between the real world, but strengthen the relationship between each other. Relationship and cooperation.”
But when talking about the meta-universe, Cook said, “ We just call it augmented reality (AR) , but I’m super excited about these new things. I believe technology can bring a lot of benefits to the world. Of course, it depends Creators depend on whether they have fully considered how new technologies are used and misused. But the most important thing is that these things give us more time for leisure and entertainment activities and do more things we want to do. This is very optimistic about what will happen in life.”
In fact, Apple’s AR device rumors have been going on for many years. However, according to Guo Mingchi’s prediction, Apple will launch AR headsets in the fourth quarter of 2022.
It is understood that Apple has obtained a number of patents on AR glasses. Apple has already acquired several AR small and medium-sized technology companies, especially in 2015, Apple acquired Metaio, known as the “originator of AR.”
Guo Mingchi believes that this AR headset will have Mac-level computing capabilities, and it may become the next generation of mobile terminal devices.
After Microsoft announced its participation in Metaverse, it launched two new software platforms Mesh for Teams and Dynamics 365 Connected Spaces.
Among them, the Mesh for Teams platform launched by Microsoft, Microsoft’s official website said that it can become “the entrance to the meta-universe.”
Another platform, Dynamics 365 Connected Spaces, allows managers to directly understand the situation in their monitoring environment and make timely adjustments through visual data and artificial intelligence-driven models.
In addition, Microsoft also “committed to developing a fully immersive meta-universe game series” through Xbox.
Unlike Meta which is meta universe + social, Microsoft is more inclined to office-based scenarios.
At the “2021 Sequoia Digital Technology Global Leaders Summit”, Microsoft Chairman and CEO Satya Nadella mentioned the recently very popular Metaverse and said he was very interested in Metaverse.
Nadella believes that “the metaverse spans the physical and digital worlds, and integrates people, things, and fields into one place in the commercial and consumer Internet. Perhaps we should not regard it as a separate consumer market or enterprise-level market. Phenomenon, because integration may be necessary. Although not so fascinating, in a sense, the popularity of video conferencing in the epidemic has allowed us to experience a 2D meta-universe to some extent. Then, if there is a 3D meta-universe What will happen to the universe? Being able to truly transcend space and time is undoubtedly an important development direction. I am very excited about these.”
Google is not as radical as Meta in the meta universe. We all know that Google’s Google Glass attempt a few years ago ended in failure.
According to reports, Google recently transferred these efforts to a new department, with the person in charge reporting directly to Google CEO Pichai, although Pichai did not provide a specific strategy.
However, Pichai showed interest in the metaverse.
Pichai said: “I am always excited about the future of immersive computing, but this does not belong to any company. This is the evolution of the Internet.”
When other giants are making efforts to “meta universe”, Pichai still chooses to continue to bet Google’s future on Internet search.
Meta universe still has a long way to go
It can be seen from the layout of the meta-universe of major Internet companies at home and abroad that, in addition to Meta, other companies are more experimental attempts at meta-universe.
At present, the concept of meta universe has not yet formed a unified consensus. The so-called meta universe in the eyes of some people may be a speculation concept in the eyes of others.
There are no mature Metacosmic products on the market, and there is no revolutionary change in experience. The Metacosmic concept is a situation of applauding or not buying.
Just like the blockchain concepts of a few years ago, they have been given the title of “revolutionary innovation”, but pure technical concepts may not necessarily be recognized by consumers.
The meta universe still has a long way to go, let’s take a look.