Big brands are flocking to the metaverse, but Sebastien Borget, one of the industry’s most important players, told AFP in an interview that broad acceptance may be years away and that the path to profitability is still unclear. The Sandbox, a platform that started out as a game for smartphones and computers but is now morphing into a virtual world where anybody may acquire land in the form of digital tokens, was co-founded by Borget.
Among companies that have already made the decision to establish themselves in The Sandbox are banking institutions Axa and HSBC, fashion houses like Gucci and Adidas, Warner Music, and Axa. In order to distance himself from the notion that it is merely a business enterprise, Frenchman Borget remarked, Above all, it is a space for creation and experience.
Brands don’t go there to make money; we are unable to do so. Internet users will shop, socialize with pals, and attend concerts in the near future on websites like The Sandbox or its primary rival Decentraland, according to enthusiasts. Wearing virtual reality goggles, users will purchase and trade bitcoins, and all of their transactions will be recorded on the blockchain, which is a type of digital ledger. That is the theory, at least.
The Sandbox is still mostly a quest-based game in which players run across block-illustrated environments in search of wealth and slaying foes. Additionally, creating your own worlds and creating your own games are encouraged. The public has only been able to access the metaverse version—where users essentially do the same thing but may earn cryptocurrency prizes and purchase more kits for their avatars—during specific events. According to Borget, only 350,000 people visited the museum during its most recent opening in March, far short of his goal of drawing hundreds of millions. We intend to accomplish this in the next five to ten years, he stated.
The metaverse and the broader web3 movement, which proposes a blockchain-based internet focused on people rather than major social media companies, are still received with a great deal of popular skepticism, though. The commercial aspect of web3 is supported by cryptocurrency trading, however, the major coins are highly unstable, and transactions can consume a lot of energy. Users are vulnerable to fraud and scams because the crypto ecosystem is mostly unregulated, has serious security weaknesses, and offers nothing in the way of insurance.
However, Borget is certain that the promise of a place where people can socialize, trade, play, and, most importantly, own their digital footprint, will prevail. Users now officially own their digital content, according to him. Everything belongs to them, including the avatar, wearables, machinery, land, and homes. They can get rid of it however they please.
The Sandbox has a clear business objective despite its emphasis on the social and creative components. In addition to keeping the proceeds from the sale of virtual land, it takes a five percent commission on every transaction. Last year, it made $200 million in revenue. Borges points out that just 166,464 virtual land parcels are available in The Sandbox, where several large corporations have already entered. In contrast to other decentralized virtual worlds, this map has a limited number of plots, according to Borget. We have already sold 70% of them. Last year, the company sold more than $500 million worth of virtual property, and Borget claimed his metaverse had a market share of 64%.
However, Borget claimed that businesses were still looking for the most effective strategy to create their online stores and offices. He claimed that brands were slow to embrace online. They are attempting to enter a little sooner with web3 in order to avoid making the same mistakes twice.