Will Meta and Microsoft drive more B2B metaverse apps?

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Mumba: Yes. As metaverse-related B2B use cases start emerging, the data and analytics company Global Data predicts companies such as Meta and Microsoft will drive more B2B metaverse applications.

Meta and Microsoft are trending across signals, including news, job postings, filing mentions, patents, and influencer discussions, reveals GlobalData

Virtual prototyping is one of the many B2B metaverse applications or apps targeted at manufacturers. It enables manufacturers to design and test new products in a virtual environment before physical prototyping.

Mercedes-Benz and BAE Systems have recently collaborated with Microsoft for virtual manufacturing and simulation. Both companies aim to drive supply chain efficiencies and generate virtual twins for their manufacturing processes.

Likewise, Japanese motorcycle brand Kawasaki will leverage Microsoft’s industrial metaverse platform to allow its factory workers to utilise HoloLens to help build robots and manage supply chains.

“An analysis of GlobalData’s company analytics database reveals that companies are actively exploring practical applications for the metaverse within a B2B context, beyond its current conceptualisation,” said Rinaldo Pereira, Business Fundamentals Analyst – GlobalData.

“The metaverse has the potential to revolutionise industrial manufacturing, and virtual prototyping can help save time and resources, and reduce the need for expensive physical prototypes,” added Pereira.

The metaverse can be used to create virtual showrooms like FIAT’s metaverse store allowing customers to interact with vehicles in a realistic, immersive environment. This use case helps improve customer experience.

“An example of virtual showrooms was FIAT teaming up with Microsoft and Touchcast for the FIAT metaverse store at CES 2023. The metaverse dominated conversations around CES2023 on social media, stealing the spotlight and generating buzz,” commented Pereira.

GlobalData expects a metaverse winter in 2023, however, its potential will likely not dampen. Metaverse and virtual reality were the key topics and witnessed a staggering 800% month-on-month growth from December 5, 2022, to January 4, 2023, over the previous month among the Twitter influencer conversations about CES2023.

Meta is also forging ahead with strategic partnerships. For example, the collaboration between Intel and Meta is set to bring low-latency wireless VR gaming. Meta had also announced partnerships with Accenture and Microsoft earlier in 2022.

Besides, Meta is researching and developing robotic ‘skin’ having sensors to provide feedback to users when they interact within the metaverse.

Given the strong dominance in the technology space, Meta and Microsoft appear to be the driving force in the metaverse-related B2B applications and use cases. Interestingly both companies announced a couple of partnerships last year as well in the area of the metaverse for some of its applications.

But there are other tech companies as well such as Nvidia, Unity, Sandbox and Roblox that also hold a strong position in the gaming industry thanks to their unique offerings related to the metaverse today.

“While still at conceptual stage, the metaverse can allow companies to create immersive, interactive training simulations to improve employee productivity. Virtual factories or digital twins can also help in remote team collaborations across different geographies. As Twitter was abuzz with CES2023, it is evident that the Metaverse continues to capture the attention of influencers,” concluded Pereira.

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