Europe consults for an open, interoperable and innovative metaverse

The European Commission launches a consultation and a call for papers on the theme of metaverse. The ambition : to get ahead on the next technological transition.

If actors like Meta or Disney are taking a back seat on the metaverse, this is not the case for the European Commission. The latter has launched a call for contributions on this theme in order to define a vision and actions.

The public consultation is open until May 3. It allows everyone to contribute to the work and reflection of the Commission. However, the European executive has already established major principles regarding virtual worlds.

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A market of 800 billion € by 2030

The Commission pleads in favor of metaverses based “on the respect of digital rights and EU legislation and values”. It also wants these worlds to check off several overarching characteristics.

The goal is to create open, interoperable and innovative virtual worlds that citizens and businesses can use safely and with confidence,” it says in its call for contributions.

European leaders express their desire to “get ahead of the next technological transition” in a market that they point out could reach 800 billion euros by 2030 (8000 billion according to Citi).

Making Europe the ideal region for business opportunities

The metaverse here encompasses both the traditional uses of virtual and augmented reality technologiesas well as the newer ones of the Web3. It is based on “real-time, immersive and persistent environments that combine physical and virtual realities”.

This extensive definition thus allows us to imagine applications of the metaverse in multiple domains such as medicinethe production or the smart citiesthe Commission stresses. The issue is therefore primarily economic.

We want to ensure that the EU is the ideal region of the globe to develop business opportunities in virtual worlds and to launch the development of Web 4.0″, mentions the executive.

Domination by Web multinationals

To benefit from the potential growth of the metaverse, the EU must, however, prevent a scenario equivalent to “the first wave of the Internet”. The Commission believes that Europe is “on the verge of a similar situation”.

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This context is characterized by “the multinationals that invest heavily in core technologies, trademark and set de facto standards as pioneers.”

On the other hand, the European Union “lacks major players in certain key areas.” It also considers its fragmented” ecosystem and whose investment capabilities “are lacking”.

There is a risk that a small number of large players will become the future gatekeepers of virtual worlds, creating barriers to market entry and excluding EU startups and SMEs from this emerging market,” the Commission warns.

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