Home5G & BeyondDon’t write off the industrial and business metaverse just yet

    Don’t write off the industrial and business metaverse just yet


    Study finds 80% of early adopters’ tested use cases will have “significant or even transformative impact” on the bottom line

    A new study, The metaverse at work, explored the current state of the enterprise and industrial metaverse and their potential. It surveyed business leaders from six countries and below is a summary what it found, which is a pleasant surprise given the lack of progress and waning enthusiasm for the metaverse according to Facebook as was.

    Even better, from the telco standpoint, it turns out they are viewed as key enablers for metaverse implementation and progression, according to respondents. They cited connectivity including private 5G and fibre fixed broadband as critical enablers of the immersive technologies that are expected to play a transformative part in enterprise and industrial strategies.

    Beyond expectations

    Business leaders believe the industrial metaverse, particularly, is expected to deliver on and beyond expectations. In the automotive sector – one of four sectors surveyed – the most transformative three use cases are expected to be: 

    • Virtual R&D for prototyping & testing – a third of relevant respondents plan to deploy this use case within the year to achieve more efficient processes, greater workplace safety and better retention of staff as the key benefits.
    • Optimising facilities – there is the most enthusiasm among the automotive sector for this use case with 60% of respondents from that sector planning and deploying at almost twice the rate of other industries.
    • Extended reality (EX) for hands-on training again is most popular in the automotive sector 12% citing capex reduction, and better safety improvement and sustainability as the main advantages.

    Overall value

    The report found the industrial metaverse is creating business value with 80% of early adopters saying that the use cases they have tested will have a significant or even transformative impact.

    Across use cases, early metaverse adopters report benefits more often than companies still in the planning phase [Editor’s note: maybe I’m lost in cyberspace but how could it be otherwise?] with less capex (15%) and sustainability (10%) showing largest differences.

    Almost all (98%) of companies surveyed believe in the power of the metaverse, while the US and UK lead in terms of actual experience. Two-thirds of respondents had a pilot or fully deployed at least one industrial or enterprise use case. Asia-Pacific is taking things more cautiously, with Japan and South Korea joint leaders in the region with 49%.

    Respondents listed cloud computing (72%), AI/ML (70%) and network connectivity (68-70%) as the as most important technical enablers to metaverse use cases.

    The metaverse at large

    Last week saw the launch of what Apple described as a “spatial computer” – its Vision Pro virtual reality headset (pictured) which is hoping to do for the metaverse or mixed reality what the iPhone did for the internet on mobile. However, at a cost of $3,499 it’s hardly likely to become a mass market phenomenon. Maybe it will be adopted by business and industry first?