One of the most common misconceptions regarding the latest iteration of the internet is that the terms Metaverse and Web 3.0 mean the same thing. Although being similar and sharing various attributes, they are two different concepts. If you fail to recognize this, you’ll risk the success of your Metaverse initiative.
So, the first step in navigating Web 3.0 and the Metaverse is understanding what makes them differ. In this article, we’ll explain those differences so you can focus your innovation efforts with a clear, structured goal in sight.
What is Web 3.0?
Web 1.0 saw the internet rolled out on a global scale and the rise of dot.com companies. Websites were created and centrally operated by the corresponding organizations. During the Web 1.0 era, web users were called visitors.
With Web 2.0 came the introduction and proliferation of user-generated content and interoperable services. Although web apps were still centrally owned, they weren’t centrally created or, in many cases, operated. Social media sites optimize Web 2.0 technologies and philosophies. During the Web 2.0 era, we had end-users.
In short, Web 3.0 is all about decentralization. By pulling further still at the fabric of the web, the aim is to do away with centralized control and develop an ecosystem where users work collectively to democratically govern the internet’s direction. Web 3.0 will be constructed on decentralized architecture, like the blockchain, and decisions made by community DAOs and other decentralized entities. As well as being user-generated, content and infrastructure will be user owned. Perhaps in Web 3.0, users will transform into pioneers.
What is the Metaverse?
The Metaverse is, in many ways, the tangible outcome of a Web 3.0 environment. The term encompasses the virtual worlds and assets built on Web 3.0 decentralized infrastructure.
Examples include virtual real estate, virtual events, avatars, and in-platform NFT collectibles. You can also tie in Metaverse technologies and the various hardware required to navigate immersive Metaverse environments. These include VR headsets, AR devices, haptic wearables, and other related apparatuses.
Today, the word Metaverse is often used interchangeably with Web 3.0. However, while Web 3.0 could exist without the Metaverse, the Metaverse couldn’t live without Web 3.0
Where do the concepts merge?
One of the areas where the lines blur between Web 3.0 and the Metaverse is with the blockchain. This is because many systems that support a Web 3.0 environment also support interactions in the Metaverse.
For example, cryptocurrencies and not fiat currencies are the standard financial instrument in the Metaverse. Existing currencies such as ETH and BTC are used as standard alongside bespoke platform tokens to buy and sell digital assets in the Metaverse.
This is also true with Web 3.0, where digital currencies supported by blockchain technology enable users to move away from centralized financial systems and operate with financial independence. Furthermore, many Metaverse platforms are built on existing and bespoke blockchains.
By creating a platform on the blockchain, you can integrate the various governance mechanisms that define Web 3.0. Most notably, the DAO system. This approach is identical to how a decentralized Web 3.0 will depart from centralized control mechanisms.
If you want to succeed with a Metaverse initiative, you need to understand the importance of Web 3.0 and, more importantly, the technologies and philosophies that support it.
When you position your Metaverse project in the context of a Web 3.0 environment, you give it longevity. The trouble is, at this early stage, Metaverse trends will come and go. Only when you ground your project in the fundamental philosophies of Web 3.0 can you hope to see it thrive once the hype settles down.
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