Industry invades the metaverse

So long Decentraland, the Industrial Metaverse is here!

The internet emerged from its military-academic roots and was adopted by business, long before it became a platform for consumers to use for media, entertainment, and games. The old hands can remember a time when the cost of broadband was prohibitive for home use, and you had to go to work to get properly connected.

Now it’s the business use of virtual and mixed reality that is making the metaverse sustainable. Playing fantasy games and socializing as a sterile avatar dressed in designer clothes has its niche market, but that’s not the killer app for virtual technologies.

As far back as 2022, industry giants like BMW saw the potential for creating a fully immersive digital twin for each of its factories, and so were able to simulate production processes and planning for new factories – before they were built. Partnering with Nvidia, they built an Omniverse environment for every plant and model, creating a platform for planning, training, and even repair and maintenance efficiencies.

Now it’s commonplace for factory workers, sorry, technicians, to be trained both in digital twin settings as well as on the job with virtual assist. Leveraging real-time data from the internet of everything optimizes automated processes and alerts them when interventions are needed, as well as monitoring the robots that do most of the work.

Metaverse technologies allow industrial companies to design new products and variants, simulate their production, revise and improve the process – like which parts should be 3D printed and which ones welded – and then move straight to actual production in the physical factory. It’s hardly necessary to prototype anymore, and that saves many millions.

So, if you’re impressed with the latest edition of Fantasy Somethingland, remember who’s really powering the metaverse: Industry.

Warning: Hazardous thinking at work

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