A new strategy announced on Monday aims to make Dubai among the world’s top 10 metaverse economies as well as a global hub for the metaverse community. The Dubai Metaverse Strategy aims to build on the emirate’s achievement of attracting more than 1,000 companies in the fields of blockchain and metaverse.
The metaverse will support 40,000 virtual jobs and add $4 billion to Dubai’s economy in five years, according to a tweet by Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai. It would also support the UAE government’s vision of increasing the number of blockchain companies by five times.
Sheikh Hamdan stressed the importance of consolidating the emirate’s “status as a hub offering the most advanced ecosystem for the metaverse and as a frontrunner in adopting digital solutions globally”.
He said Dubai is making “great strides” in enhancing its position as a global testbed for metaverse technology while “investing judiciously in building capabilities and talent in creating the region’s most robust and largest ecosystem for the metaverse community”.
Dubai aims to use future technologies to create new work models in vital sectors and increase the metaverse’s impact on regional and global economies, he added.
Omar bin Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial intelligence, Digital Economy and Remote Work Applications, and Deputy Managing Director of the Dubai Future Foundation, said the metaverse would drive the UAE’s and Dubai’s efforts to provide innovative solutions, positively impact people’s lives, and transform the city into one of the smartest hubs worldwide offering new economic opportunities.
The Dubai Metaverse Strategy aims to foster innovation, enhance the metaverse’s economic contributions through R&D collaborations, and promote advanced ecosystems utilising accelerators and incubators that attract companies and projects to Dubai.
The strategy emphasises fostering talent and investing in future capabilities by providing the necessary support in metaverse education aimed at developers, content creators and users of digital platforms in the metaverse community.
The strategy supports the development of Web3 technology and its applications to create new government work models and development in vital sectors, including tourism, education, retail, remote work, healthcare, and the legal sector. The strategy also aims to develop global standards in building safe and secure platforms for users and develop metaverse infrastructure and regulations to accelerate the adoption of these technologies.
The strategy’s key pillars focus on extended reality (which blends the physical and virtual worlds), augmented reality, virtual reality, mixed reality, and digital twins (a virtual representation of an object or system). The strategy aims at leveraging real-time data, using machine learning and IoT, and employing AI simulation and blockchain to enhance the human thinking processes.
Data, network, cloud, and edge computing are technology pillars of the metaverse strategy that focus on real-world data that is obtained, validated, stored, processed, and managed. Other pillars include promoting the full deployment of 5G networks to enable edge computing and provide on-demand computer system resources. Edge computing allows data to be collected, stored, and processed locally via smart devices and local networks instead of the cloud.
Boosting the economy
VR and AR are two key enablers of the metaverse, responsible for 6,700 jobs and contributing $500 million to the UAE’s economy. The metaverse provides an array of economic opportunities. Globally, the value of venture capital and private equity financing in the metaverse reached $13 billion in 2021, while real estate sales in the metaverse surpassed $500 million last year.
Second Life – a virtual world in which participants can explore fantasy landscapes and build their own – contributed more than $650 million to global GDP in 2021. The metaverse also achieved 200 strategic partnerships with Sandbox, a decentralised gaming virtual world, which includes the launch of the Warner Music Group as a music-themed virtual world in the metaverse.
Analysts estimate that the metaverse will contribute up to $5 trillion to the global economy by 2030. The market value of NFTs is expected to reach $80 billion, while consumer spending on in-game purchases is reckoned to reach $75 billion by 2025. Recent studies show that the daily active users on Roblox, one of the leading global metaverse communities, has increased to 55 million. At the same time, 59 per cent of global consumers are keen to transition at least one of their everyday activities to the metaverse.
(Source: Khaleej Times)