Ethereum’s Vitalik Buterin Challenges Hype: Metaverse Is Still Misunderstood



Metaverse has gained tremendous traction over the past couple of years, grabbing the attention of large companies across the world.

But Ethereum co-founder, Vitalik Buterin, believes the concept of the Metaverse is still “poorly defined” and needs to have several elements to make it meaningful.

Dissecting Metaverse

During a Q&A session while speaking at the BUIDL Asia conference in Seoul, Buterin pointed out a common misconception in associating the Metaverse solely with virtual reality (VR). The Ethereum co-founder argued that VR often leads people to imagine complex environments, whereas the actual needs tend to be simpler.

He illustrated this by suggesting that what people truly desire is the functionality of a laptop without the physical device itself, essentially implying that while VR may have its utility, it doesn’t necessarily constitute a true Metaverse experience.

“To me, Metaverse is one of those things which are very poorly defined. Like a brand’s name more than a product. It feels like everyone has this abstract idea that there is a virtual universe that they can all participate in and that the virtual universe is not actually owned by anyone. But the challenge is that they often get connected to virtual reality.

But with virtual reality, the kinds of things that people actually need end up being much simpler. You basically want a laptop without a laptop. That’s super useful but not a ‘verse’.”

True Metaverse Fusion: Crypto, VR, AI

According to Buterin, a true Metaverse experience may emerge from combining existing virtual world elements, including certain aspects of crypto, virtual reality, and artificial intelligence, rather than from attempts to create a Metaverse-like environment directly.

“The thing that I expect most similar to a metaverse that actually makes sense is not something that tries to be a metaverse. But something that takes all of the different virtual world things that we already have including part of crypto, VR, AI and combining them together in the right way.”

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