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Has Microsoft Already Won the Metaverse Race?

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Facebook Meta Goes All in on the Metaverse

Microsoft is about to extinguish Zuckerberg’s Metaverse before it even launches, and they won’t even need to build a VR headset to do it. This probably sounds crazy. After all, Zuckerberg is so invested in the Metaverse that he renamed his entire company to focus on the effort, and he’s planning on investing $180,000,000,000 over the next ten years in building this thing. But his plan is flawed for a few reasons.

Microsoft is about to extinguish Zuckerberg’s Metaverse before it even launches. This probably sounds crazy, but Microsoft has a plan that will render Zuck’s efforts useless. After all, Zuckerberg is so invested in the Metaverse that he renamed his entire company to focus on the effort, and he’s planning on investing $180 billion over the next ten years. But his plan is flawed for a few reasons.

Zuckerberg appears to be in a good situation here. Every day, billions of people use Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp to interact with friends and relatives; he also runs the largest virtual reality firm.

Even though most people continue to view VR as a toy, Quest surpassed the Xbox in 2021. On the other hand, Microsoft isn’t going to let him win. There are three key reasons why Microsoft will defeat Zuckerberg in the Metaverse battle, so let’s look at them one by one.

“We are creating an entirely new platform layer, which is the Metaverse. We are bringing people, places and things together with the digital world.”

Satya Nadella

Isn’t the Metaverse a Video Game? We Already Have Those, Right?

Some of these individuals would cite Second Life, World of Warcraft, and Fortnite to illustrate that we already have a Metaverse, and they are not incorrect. Gaming is an excellent gateway into the Metaverse, but things will get a lot more chaotic in the long run.

With the capability to engage with millions of people, all in a single shared virtual world, Metaverse experiences will become bigger and more immersive. Digital assets and avatars will move across different locations, and complete economies will develop to support a variety of contributors.

We don’t know what platform will win in the long run, but one thing is sure: gaming will play a substantial role here, which is why Microsoft’s approach is so brilliant. For decades now, they’ve been a major player in the video game business, first with PC games like Doom in the 1990s and latterly with Xbox games like

Microsoft can’t do much with a platform for amazing games if it doesn’t own the Studios that create them. So Microsoft has been building a gaming empire for years, and it’s about to get even bigger. In 2014, Microsoft paid $2 billion for Minecraft. The game has evolved into its own tiny Metaverse, with over 140 million monthly active users. And now players are constructing complete simulations like Youtube star Mr Beast’s 20-concurrent-contestant battle. Then in 2020, Microsoft bought ZeniMax Media for $5 billion, giving them the right to Doom and The Elder Scrolls.

Microsoft Buying Up Computer Game Developers

Most of these games have communities of modders that are constantly improving and enhancing the gaming experience. And now, most recently, Microsoft purchased Activision Blizzard for $69 billion. That seems like a lot of money, but Microsoft has over $130 billion in cash on hand, which will be crucial to their Metaverse plan. Each developer acquisition is another nuclear weapon in Microsoft’s Metaverse nuclear arsenal.

Activision is one of the world’s most well-known game developers. Activision has several of the most popular gaming series, including Call of Duty, Overwatch, and even Tony Hawks. These games are cross-platform and widely accessible on PlayStation and Nintendo consoles. It appears that Microsoft made a wise business decision by not taking Call of Duty away from PlayStation.

Microsoft began selling video games directly to consumers in March with the launch of Xbox Game Pass, a service that lets you play a library of Microsoft titles for $9.99 per month. It was essentially the Netflix model, but it marked a massive change in their business strategy.

Previously, if Microsoft acquired a game studio and then locked those games to the Xbox, sales would quickly plummet. Sure, during the next upgrade cycle, some PlayStation gamers may switch to Xbox, but these acquisitions would generally be harmful value-wise. However. As a result, Microsft decided to license its game to other platforms but made the game pass and its mega library of games an irresistible feature of the Xbox. Why bother buying games for the PlayStation when you can get them all on the Xbox Game Pass for a small fee, that there is 3D chess.

Buying Activision makes Xbox Game Pass more appealing and tenacious since players will get all of that content for free as long as they are a member. The second misconception about the Activision buy is that it would create a gaming monopoly. Even though this is a considerable acquisition, game publishing still remains quite fragmented.

Facebook’s Weak Gaming Pedigree

Farm Heros is Facebook’s most popular game with 10 million monthly users. But its hardly on the same level as Call of Duty

Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard is still going to make them third in terms of revenue, behind only Tencent and Sony. New breakout successes occur every year in the gaming business, so no one has complete command yet. Take a look at how the search engine market compares. Clearly, Google has a stranglehold on search. No other companies stand a chance against them. But of all the game publishers that Microsoft is competing against, Facebook/Meta aren’t in the same league as Microsoft.

That’s because Zuckerberg has only established a few modest gaming initiatives for VR, and he hasn’t purchased any large gaming firms. So it’s possible that he doesn’t think classic game franchises will adapt to the Metaverse. And this is something I’m genuinely unsure about. So is the Metaverse more likely to blossom from Overwatch or another known game, or will these Metaverse adventures be based on fresh intellectual property?

A Metaverse That Adapts to the Market

These days, everyone wants a home computer, but when these personal computers were originally introduced to the market, most customers had no desire for them. These huge, heavy devices were more like glorified calculators, so most people did not need them at home. However, after just a few years on the job, they became absolutely essential.

Because computers boosted productivity, several businesses bought them for their employees. As a result, employees no longer needed to spend hours shuffling paperwork since they might now store information in computers. As a result, profits rose, so every firm began implementing them.

The fascinating thing was that once people got used to using computers at work, they wanted to use them at home as well. As the number of home computers grew, so did the desire for non-work applications such as games. So you might have bought a computer to type up letters, but pretty soon, you’d want a game on it. It’s conceivable that the Metaverse will follow a similar course. First, your firm provides you with a virtual reality headset so you can work together remotely.

Spending a few hundred dollars is well worth it if it can enhance productivity by even a little bit. For example, I could see companies giving every employee a VR headset for a holiday party, which is now unusual for technology firms to do. It’s pretty uncommon for businesses to spend thousands of dollars on business gatherings these days, so spending a few hundred dollars per employee. Zuckerberg is clearly bought into this vision and wants to make Horizon Work Rooms the default application for virtual work.

Is it possible that he’ll outperform Microsoft in this market? It’s really tough for organisations to shift their attention from consumers to businesses. People link Meta (Facebook) with their strange uncle who posts unhinged rants on Facebook every day, for better or worse.

Microsft Teams and the Metaverse

Although you may not have heard of it, Facebook did launch its Workplace back in 2016, so they aren’t entirely green in the workspace sector. Despite Microsoft’s ambitions, Satya Nadella has effectively pivoted Microsoft away from a concentration on Windows and fully embraced the cloud.

Microsoft knows that few businesses will exclusively use PCs with Windows installed. Many individuals want to utilise Apple devices, and many software developers insist on using Linux. Because of this device division, any Microsoft product that required Windows to function would be limited in terms of success, so they established Microsoft Teams.

Most people consider Microsoft Teams to be a slack ripoff., and as you can see, some of the design concepts are identical. But Microsoft has bigger plans for Microsoft Team than that. It begins with document sharing and video communication, which is essential to all the basic business operations, and then progresses into Zuckerbergs more esoteric metaverse ideas. The enterprise collaboration side of things appears to be far less interesting than the video game aspect, but it’s actually critical to Microsoft’s Metaverse strategy.

Microsoft may well get there first if you consider a Metaverse to reflect a world where you can interact with data and applications in a more immersive way. For starters, Microsoft already offers a collection of solutions known as digital twins that allow businesses to produce virtual copies of real-world things. These are virtual representations of real-world objects, such as manufacturing equipment. But having a 3D model of a factory isn’t sufficient. Organisations want to know what each piece of equipment is doing, how much energy the plant inputs, and when the latest batch of goods will be produced.

Microsoft’s Multi-Platform Approach to the Metaverse

This is all part of the Internet of Things movement, which was popular a few years ago but has yet to take hold with the average person, aside from a smart thermostat here and there. However, these Metaverse concepts may be quite beneficial in a business situation. For example, companies can start analysing performance indicators and even develop automated systems to boost efficiency once real-time factory data is connected with the Digital Twin.

Things get interesting when employees go and see the Digital Twin data while walking around the physical world. This is made possible by augmented reality like Microsoft HoloLens. Surprisingly, Microsoft isn’t particularly bound to that device. As I previously stated, Microsoft is migrating away from a single computing platform and wants to operate on every platform. That’s why you may use Microsoft Team to communicate with coworkers on a Mac, and you may even play Gears of War on your iPhone. Unfortunately, Microsoft isn’t interested in forcing you into a device, which will be a huge benefit in the future.

So Microsoft is basically attacking Zuckerberg on two fronts. First, they’ve got an excellent foothold with business users, and they’re building a massive Empire over in gaming.

Predicting the Future of the Tech Industry

Mark Zuckerberg is getting a good kicking right now. Facebook/meta has set the record for the largest one-day stock devaluation in history at $230 billion, yet he seems to be doubling down anyhow, so let’s figure out why. It’s really tough to predict the future. If you can do it well, you’ll go from being extremely poor to extremely rich in a matter of months. There’s a hitch, however. You can sometimes see the future clearly yet still be unable to carry out a successful plan. That was precisely Bill Gates’s situation three decades ago.

In 1995, Bill Gates was on top of the world. Everyone was buying PCs. Windows was changing workplaces, and Microsoft seemed to be on its way to becoming the world’s most valuable firm. As a result, Bill took to the podium and laid out what he thought would happen next.

“This industry will be at the center of all of it with its software innovation, its competitive hardware we’ll be sharing this so-called information highway”

Bill Gates

Bill Gates mentioned the internet, and though he stopped using the phrase information highway to describe it, Bill accurately predicted several key events.

“We call it the wallet PC because it’s capable of really replacing everything that you carry with you. So that getting messages, seeing the latest news, seeing different locations, keeping track of your schedule.”

Bill Gates

To me, this sounds an awful lot like a smartphone. Bill didn’t stop there, either; he also went on to explain how cars would have large displays with real-time maps and how consumers would make purchases with their phones. These predictions mostly came true, but not because of Microsoft.

Even if Bill described how a smartphone should function in terms of functions, capabilities, and usage patterns, Microsoft has never been able to compete against Apple and Google in the market. Google and Apple reign supreme in many of these categories, with Microsoft usually a distant third. So what does this imply for Zuckerberg and his ambition to create the Metaverse? Even when your expectations about the future are correct, as Bill Gates demonstrates in that speech, it doesn’t necessarily guarantee victory.

To Conclude: Our Metaverse Prediction

It’s entirely conceivable that everything Mark Zuckerberg has promised will come true. We’ll all be wearing virtual reality headsets and interacting in virtual realms, but Meta might not be involved at all. Microsoft was unable to capitalise on the mobile internet revolution since it was overly focused on Windows. Microsoft’s reinvention will take time, and it’ll require a lot of hard work to get there. So when Satya Nadella separated the company from Windows, Microsoft was no longer encumbered by its heritage and could start competing in new fields.

So to conclude, everything is to play for. It’s still early days in the Metaverse, and those who are first aren’t always the last ones standing as Microsoft proved with mobile phone hardware. However, Microsoft’s personal and business use infrastructures and its vast user base have the most robust foundation for Microsoft to get a firm grasp of the metaverse sector.

The only issue is that there’s still one outstanding question. When will the Metaverse be implemented and is our network infrastructure ready?

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