3 min

Meta is quietly beginning to realize the state of the metaverse: “The metaverse hype is dead,” says Vishal Shah, vice president of metaverse at Meta. But don’t think we won’t hear Zuckerberg and his team say another word about the metaverse. According to Shah, the time is now to actually build the digital world. He says that for job retention right? …Right?

Vishal Shah, vice president of metaverse at Meta, is not losing faith in the metaverse. According to him, only the hype surrounding it has died out. He said this during Fortune Brainstorm Tech that took place last week. Given the recent news surrounding the metaverse, in which Gartner states there is a lack of interest in the metaverse, we’ll let you judge for yourself how you feel about the VP’s statement.

“I’m actually quite happy that last year there was both hype and a low point of disillusionment,” Shah said. “But now we have our heads down and built, because that’s what it takes to build something difficult to iterate and do it.”

For now, it looks like we’re mostly sobering up after a long night out. Looking at the whole thing from Gartner’s hype cycle, Shah says we are now in the third phase “Trough of Disillusionment,” a phase in which interest wanes because the technology can’t live up to its full expectations. We have already passed through a phase of ‘Innovation Trigger’ and ‘Peak of Inflated Expectations’. What awaits us is a phase where it becomes clear what the technology can now offer in a business context.

Will AR or VR win?

Opinions are divided on what the future will bring for the metaverse. In the latest study, Gartner sees a future only for AR, a viewpoint that speaks in favor of Apple. The research firm cites that AR can solve the challenges of the metaverse. Meta thinks it can meet those challenges.

Europe also thinks they should already be preparing for the “new technological transition” and is building a strategy to regulate the metaverse. “Virtual worlds will impact the way people live together, bringing both opportunities and risks that need to be addressed. The new strategy aims for a Web 4.0 and virtual worlds reflecting EU values and principles, where people’s rights fully apply and where European businesses can thrive.”

The EU is currently still using abstract language that means nothing concrete. At least this is nicely in line with what the metaverse currently looks like. We note that the word “metaverse” is not used literally in this text. It cannot be ruled out that the final legal text will deal with AR if that turns out to be the dominant virtual world. AR is just a watered-down version of virtual reality, mixing the real and digital worlds.

Creations for a niche market

We are curious to see what innovations Shah will bring to the digital world, now that he can work in peace. In any case, the innovation will have to overwhelm the public to get any attention at all. Without hype and public interest, you are creating a digital world for a niche market in the first place. How Meta makes the metaverse famous among the general public seems to be a challenge that Shah is not currently considering.

Attitudes may change once the metaverse becomes something concrete. After all, many people just don’t understand what the metaverse entails, and that’s also pernicious for interest, according to Gartner research.

Tip: Metaverse promises much, doesn’t deliver yet; Disney pulls plug on division