The future on the web is immersive and three-dimensional: at the NTR – The Metaverse Summit, visionaries and actors from around the world discussed how this metaverse will change the economy and society. Over 300 attendees made the Summit the largest Metaverse event in the DACH region.
The internet will increasingly surround us with augmented or fully immersive virtual reality in the years to come. Until then, there are still some tasks in the house: “The BVDW shapes the development of the digital economy. The Metaverse is the next step we want to push from Germany,” said BVDW President Dirk Freytag. The organizers of the NTR – The Metaverse Summit at Europa-Park in Rust are the Bundesverband Digitale Wirtschaft (BVDW) e. ͒V. and MACK Next. NTR is the event and know-how platform on which the BVDW brings together leading international expertise on technological, economic and social developments.
Metaverse Stakes Discussion
41 speakers from Europe and the United States provided in-depth information on the next generation of the web. Ethical and social issues, which were discussed with summit participants in breakout sessions, are of particular importance. It wasn’t just pure theory. Exhibitors as well as Europa-Park with its VR attractions showed the physical experience of virtual worlds.
Keynote speakers included Cathy Hackl, “Godmother of the Metaverse” and Chief Metaverse Officer of consultancy firm Journey. “We are at the beginning of a new era. The internet is evolving from a world of sharing and liking to a web where the focus is on creation,” explained Cathy Hackl during a fireside chat with Mark Wächter, president of the Metaverse department at BVDW.
Virtual reality and the metaverse are crucial for the digital future
Initially, the Minister for Digital and Transport, Volker Wissing, stressed that virtual reality and the metaverse are essential for our digital future. At the business level, the web of the future requires above all new strategies. Tibor Mérey, general manager of BCG Gamma, gave a figure on this subject. Products and services alone are expected to reach a market volume of $400 billion by 2025. Dirk Lueth, co-CEO of the Metaverse platform Upland, explained what that could look like. It is a virtual representation of the world that combines games, social interactions and an NFT market.
A discussion started around the question “What motivates users to go to the Metaverse?” Stefan Wenz, Business Development Manager of Epic Games, emphasized the power of gamification. Holoride founder Nils Wollny talked about “tokenization” – that is, rewards. Tim Walther, Group Manager Metaverse and NFT at Volkswagen, thought it was too small, he sees the ecosystem as a whole as a success factor – in other words, many factors that should interact. And companies are already working there, including Europa-Park. About 40 million people around the world have ridden roller coasters with VR glasses since 2015 – with technology made in Rust.
Aurea Awards for immersive technological developments
As part of the NTR – The Metaverse Summit, the Aurea Award was integrated this year. For the fifth time, MACK NeXT presented the awards for immersive technology and entertainment developments in VR, AR, XR and MR. An international jury made up of five members chose five winners from around sixty nominated projects. “Digitalization now plays a central role in a wide variety of areas and is largely responsible for the success and not least the progress of our business,” says Michael Mack, managing partner of Europa-Park and founder of MACK NeXT.
The Bundesverband Digitale Wirtschaft (BVDW) eV represents the interests of companies that operate digital business models or whose added value is based on the use of digital technologies. As an initiator, guide and accelerator of digital business models, the BVDW represents the interests of the digital economy in politics and society and is committed to creating market transparency and favorable framework conditions for innovation .
MackNeXT turns unique ideas into reality. Michael Mack, Managing Partner of Europa-Park, founded the Mack Group Innovation Center in 2019 to explore and push the boundaries of digital entertainment. With the opening of the world premiere of VR Yullbe, the MackNeXT 2020 team has reached a milestone in the leisure and entertainment industry. (gs)
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