Podcast Review: Matthew Ball Reveals Keynotes on the Metaverse’s Evolution and Potential

The Metaverse is a digital reality mooted by many to become the next generation of the internet. Although this word is being used on a daily basis, either via the gaming world, payment sector, social communities or even the gambling sector itself, the idea of what the metaverse actually is still raises many questions. 

In the latest episode of iGaming Daily, Matthew Ball, the best-selling author of The Metaverse: And How it Will Revolutionise Everything, walks through its comparison between the Internet as we know it today and how it will evolve.

“The metaverse will come to affect every person, sector, and country, creating new jobs, pass times, and business models. This is a multi-trillion dollar event – and sports betting and iGaming are likely to be among the first categories it will transform,” he pointed out. 

He was very clear about the Metaverse not being just virtual reality. “Do not think of the Metaverse as a replacement for the Internet,” he cautioned as well.

“I won’t tell you that the Metaverse isn’t full of a lot of hype. I won’t tell you that the Metaverse is not here yet. But I will tell you that what we’re seeing is unique. Seven of the 10 largest companies globally at the start of this year were investing tens of billions of dollars each into these initiatives.”

Citing numerous companies around the world, Ball illustrated the massive growth and investment in the Metaverse, but he also readily admitted that the technology is not where it needs to be in order for this to truly become a global phenomenon.

“I want to mention that we still remain barred from some of the areas that we believe are important. So I want to talk about one of the examples, which is virtual reality devices. We’re still far from what we think minimum specs would be for the average user, yet we should not discount the remarkable improvement.”

As the Metaverse does scale, Ball cautioned about two things that are always at the forefront of the gaming industry’s mind: localization and regionalization.

“The internet over time has become increasingly regionalized. This is the effect of two different tasks. Number one is regulation. Governments around the world understand the criticality of the internet and look to preserve local culture. But more important is the way in which the internet’s maturity has led to the growth of companies with regional expertise.”

Ball expects this paradigm to get shaken up as the Metaverse grows, primarily because there will be different stakeholders at the heart of the industry that won’t be as rooted in the physical world. Nonetheless, Ball isn’t too concerned that this shift will result in a lack of regulation.

“When I see regulators and when I talk to regulators, I see them not actually scared of the future but very vigilant about shaping it. And they spend a lot of time taking a look at which companies have been ethical, which have been responsible, which are thinking about what they’re doing, rather than just rushing to make an extra dollar.”

Even the crypto space is starting to implement KYC protocols, despite it not being necessary. There are also ad restrictions in place to ensure products are being marketed to adults only within games like Roblox.

All of these are the kinds of measures needed for a gambling regulator to feel comfortable about participation in the space, but there are still going to be lots of questions to answer about what exactly constitutes gambling, particularly when the idea of value is increasingly placed not on currency but on digital objects.

Matthew Ball will be delivering a live keynote at SBC Summit Barcelona, on September 21, 2023. This is a conference and exhibition where global leaders in sports betting and iGaming assemble to discuss the future of the industry, exchange knowledge and build powerful connections. The event offers delegates the unique opportunity to reach and network with thousands of attendees from all across the globe and covering all industry verticals.

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