[Answered] Explain the concept of Metaverse. What are the challenges and opportunities associated with Metaverse in India?

Introduction: Write about metaverse.

Body: Write some points about challenges and opportunities due to metaverse in the context of India.

Conclusion: conclude with some suggestions.

The word “metaverse’ is a combination of two words- “meta” means “beyond” and “verse” comes from the word “universe”. A Metaverse is a form of “extended reality”. This “extended reality” may be a combination of augmented, virtual and mixed reality. Those who use these technologies can immerse themselves in this virtual world and build on it, so users can interact with, work, do business, learn and enjoy themselves in this environment.  There is also a specific type of metaverse which uses blockchain technology. In these, users can buy virtual land and other digital assets using cryptocurrencies.

Challenges:

  • Infrastructure: Building a metaverse will require a bulk of resources such as hardware, software and the current form of the Internet and its bandwidth is limited in their design to hold the 3D digital space.
  • Regulatory issues: Metaverse will engage users from various domains at various levels all over the world. Therefore, it will be a difficult task to regulate it.
  • Data privacy and security: Beyond crypto, the metaverse also raises policy questions of how privacy and security should be addressed. Online risks may be aggravated in the metaverse.
  • Digital literacy: Governance mechanisms for virtual worlds are lacking in digital literacy, safety, and wellbeing of participants.
  • Identity fraud: There is a huge possibility of forgery of facial features, footage and voice.

Opportunities:

  • IT services: Indian IT services companies are coming up with service offerings in metaverse space that can cater to various sectors well in advance than global competitors.
  • Gaming industry: With 440 million gamers or 16 per cent of the worldwide gamers, the country is among the top five global markets in the world. Currently, mobile gaming dominates the Indian gaming sector, contributing more than 90 per cent to the $1.6 billion gaming market. This is expected to further grow to generate $3.9 billion value by 2025, as per the report by Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI).
  • Social benefits: For instance, telehealth and tele-education can be more evolved with the help of metaverse. India will be in a better position to deliver basic amenities like health and education to millions of people in the neighbourhood of the country.

Technology of metaverse is still evolving and it could also lead to new scrutiny of old issues like data privacy. Metaverse provides immense opportunities in various sectors including health and education, but the associated threats should be addressed.

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