According to experts, while China is unlikely to decriminalize cryptocurrency in the near future, NFTs and blockchain still have a place in the Communist country’s Metaverse in the long run.
The Sino Metaverse is likely to mimic what happened with the web. When the internet initially became popular in the 1990s, many people predicted that technology would hasten China’s democratic transition.
The Communist nation’s dislike for decentralization will not necessarily keep it from participating in the Metaverse. This is according to NewZoo’s 2021 trend report “Intro to the Metaverse”. However, the experience may be extremely different, comparable to how the internet looks different behind the Great Firewall.
China controls its domestic internet and blocks foreign websites, filtering politically sensitive content.
Mario Stefanidis is vice president of research at Roundhill Investments. He said that China is likely to pursue a similar approach to Web3 trends.
He claims that overseeing the development of a local metaverse will be far easier for China. This compared to providing users access to the “global metaverse”. At the same time, spending enormous efforts controlling and restricting particular experiences.
The split will be particularly obvious between China’s metaverse and the United States. This is according to Nina Xiang, writer and creator of Asian digital intelligence and data company China Money Network.
She wrote her latest novel, Parallel Metaverses: How the United States, China, and the Rest of the World Are Shaping Different Virtual Worlds. In here she said that the materialization of the Metaverse will occur amid ongoing geopolitical and technological rivalry between the United States and China.
This means that significant actors, content development, infrastructure outlays, applications, product formats, rules and regulations, and investment opportunities may differ more across the two countries’ metaverse ecosystems.
Metaverse Paved by Tech Giants
The Metaverse’s potential has piqued the curiosity of Chinese businesses. More than 10 billion yuan ($1.6 billion) invested in Metaverse-related companies in the three months. This led up to the end of November 2021. According to Sino Global, just 2.1 billion yuan invested in the entire year of 2020.
The app’s projected emphasis is on digital infrastructure. Baidu vice president Ma Jie made it clear that it will not support bitcoin or NFTs when it unveiled in December.
Tencent, a Chinese entertainment corporation, is the world’s largest video game firm by investment. In January, it announced plans to buy VR gear developer Black Shark. In a recent earnings call, the company’s president Martin Lau termed the Metaverse a “serious opportunity”.
As per the Intro to the Metaverse report, Tencent does not require decentralized infrastructure to realize its metaverse vision. It does not require decentralized infrastructure to realize its metaverse vision, as per the Intro to the Metaverse report, because of its market dominance.
Tencent’s ecosystem already includes most vertices in the game and tech services industries. Consequently, it can theoretically achieve high interoperability without decentralized infrastructure.
Tencent lodged a total of 4,085 patent applications for virtual and augmented reality technology in 2020 and 2021. This was according to a study by local media outlet IPRdaily. This is far from the only Chinese company, with China accounting for six of the top 10 corporations in terms of VR and AR patent applications filed in the last two years.
According to a Reuters report published on January 27, China’s efforts in the Metaverse are still underperforming. It noted a drop in local tech companies’ investment. This also noted the fact that industry-leading goods like Meta’s Oculus virtual reality (VR) headsets prohibits in China.
User content creation has become one of the Metaverse’s main foundations. Even though, it’s famously tough in China due to the country’s harsh limitations on expression. Tencent, according to NewZoo, will most likely create its own Metaverse content through reusable game modes, live-ops, and IP collaborations.
Gaming is an important part of the Metaverse, however, it is also subject to strict regulation by the Chinese government. It prohibits everything from strong violent content to depictions of anything that could be considered “obscene.” In the past year, the government has also begun to limit the number of time minors can spend playing games.