Image: YouTube E3 / 2017
Former Nintendo US boss (2006 to 2019) Reggie Fils-Aime sees the Metaverse in the making – but doesn’t trust Meta to make a splash. The company lacks a spirit of innovation.
Fils-Aime writes on Twitter that he is “bullish” on the Metaverse concept, as developed in Roblox or Fortnite. However, Nintendo’s longtime president compares the current Metaverse hype with the cloud and internet hype five and 20 years ago, respectively, as each company tries to position itself in the context of technology.
A digital space to socialize and play
To the myriad definitions of the metaverse, Fils-Aime adds his own: he sees the metaverse as a digital space where you meet friends, especially for games, and people who could become friends.
In the context of Fortnite and Roblox, Fils-Aime says the Metaverse already exists: “Big cultural events, artists interacting with their fans,” Fils-Aime says. “Many different digital experiences united in one currency. This is already the case today. »
Can meta innovate?
On the other hand, Fils-Aime can gain nothing from the rather open definition of Meta, because it is vaguely worded. This apparently has less to do with the concept than with the company behind it: “Facebook is not an innovative company,” says Fils-Aime.
Meta bought other companies or quickly copied other people’s ideas. Fils-Aime credits the original Facebook platform to the company as an innovation.
To innovate, you have to think about customers first. However, from Fils-Aimes’ point of view, Meta thinks advertising revenue first. Innovative companies also have a culture of innovation where new ideas are rewarded – again, Fils-Aimes has reservations about Meta.
According to Fils-Aimes, VR is not yet mature enough
Meta’s hardware efforts and current VR hardware don’t impress former Nintendo presidents either. As far as he knows, about 20 million VR glasses sold in the industry was a “good year” for Nintendo.
He has tested almost every VR goggle on the market and none of them have convinced him that VR is ready for the mass market. He’s more convinced of AR and cites Pokémon Go as a successful example – but doesn’t mention that Niantic’s megahit has so far been a flash in the pan in AR gaming and that AR glasses have a lot more technical challenges. than VR glasses.
Fils-Aime’s assessment aligns with Nintendo’s position in recent years that augmented reality is the more attractive technology for gaming than virtual reality. Aside from experiments like the Labo VR children’s toy and a Super Mario Kart VR machine, the gaming giant hasn’t shown major VR ambitions.
This also applies to augmented reality: until now, there was only a Mario Kart gimmick for home and the Super Nintendo World amusement park. Other Pokémon Go-style AR games are likely in the works at Nintendo.
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