Citi is the latest banking behemoth to give an optimistic forecast for the metaverse, which envisions the internet’s future as a collection of decentralized technology and virtual environments.
According to the New York-headquartered global investment bank, the metaverse economy may be worth up to $13 trillion by 2030.
While some remain suspicious of the metaverse, the Wall Street player says it sees tremendous potential in the concept of extended reality.
According to the Citi analysis, the metaverse is mainly defined at the moment as an immersive mix of online gaming platforms that rely heavily on 3D interactive play with others or offline augmented reality.
However, this will change in the future years. The multinational lender anticipates that the metaverse’s user base will grow to as many as 5 billion.
Citi Metaverse Concept Encompasses Gaming
Citi’s understanding of the metaverse is broader than gaming and virtual reality applications. Its expansive vision encompasses smart manufacturing technology, virtual advertising, online events such as concerts, and digital currencies such as bitcoin.
However, Citi noted that it will take time, with the metaverse’s content streaming environment likely requiring a “computational efficiency gain of more than 1,000x today’s levels.”
“We believe the Metaverse is the next generation of the internet, fusing the physical and digital worlds in a persistent and immersive manner, rather than being a purely virtual reality environment.”
The report states that the 5 billion figure is an estimate. It includes a mobile phone user base, and if the metaverse is limited to VR/AR devices, it projects a closer to 1 billion audience.
A Lot Of Work To Do
Citi stated that achieving the bank’s vision of a “Brave New Meta World” by 2030 will require substantial investment and technology enhancements.
Citi’s 184-page report delves deeply into numerous facets of the metaverse.
They contain a definition of the virtual realm, its infrastructure, cryptoassets such as NFTs, money and DeFi, as well as regulatory changes affecting the virtual world.
Other Wall Street Players Are Bullish
Meanwhile, Goldman Sachs estimated the sector’s value at $12.5 trillion in a December report, based on a bullish scenario in which 70% of the digital economy pivots to the metaverse and then doubles in size.
Morgan Stanley, another prominent investment firm, anticipated the same figure for the metaverse in November of last year.
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