What the Metaverse Will Mean

Many of the world’s most powerful companies and ambitious entrepreneurs are rushing to build “the metaverse,” an often vaguely described “next generation internet” or parallel virtual world intended to have the immersive feel of the real one. The metaverse is also popular with those working to develop “Web3,” which aims to build a blockchain-based internet that is largely beyond the control of regulators, banks and today’s tech platforms.

McKinsey & Company estimates that during the first five months of the year, global investment in the metaverse hit $120 billion—double the amount invested in all of 2021. According to Microsoft, its record-breaking $75 billion acquisition of the company Activision Blizzard is intended to “provide building blocks for the metaverse.” Mark Zuckerberg famously renamed Facebook as part of his efforts to transition it from a social-media company to a metaverse enterprise.