Metaverse, digital transformation, and the future of storytelling

The Walt Disney Company is one of the world’s most popular entertainment brands and is responsible for some of the best-loved children’s stories of all time. For this reason, the concept of metaverse – Experimental immersive online environments ripe with magic and storytelling potential – perfectly suited to its business strategy.

Disney’s IP includes Marvel, Star Wars, its vast library of animated films dating back more than 60 years, and child-loving brands like Disney Princesses and Disney Villains. It stands to reason that any kind of shared online digital universe that focuses on these worlds and characters would likely be a huge source of income for House of the Mouse. While specific details on this are currently few and far between, it seems like a fairly safe bet that she’s cooking something up like this!

In addition to movies, TV shows and animations, the legendary entertainment brand is of course known for its resorts and theme parks. This ability to bring fantasy to life in the real world also correlates neatly with the metaverse, which many believe will focus on blending reality with virtual. For these reasons, Disney is perhaps one of the best companies to take advantage of the opportunities offered by connected, immersive, and continuous virtual worlds. So here’s an overview of some of the ways we know or expect to jump in this exciting new trend.

Team Assemble

To build metaverse opportunities, you need people in their place. Disney showed it was working on this by appointing its first “Metaverse Executive”, Mike White, to begin building a metaverse strategy. Mike’s title is an SVP of the next generation of storytelling and consumer experiences, and he believes it will focus on understanding the potential of virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and other technologies compatible with the metaverse. What these technologies offer to Disney and other entertainment and media groups is an entirely new set of tools for building new audience experiences. Disney has always been forward-looking and has been quick to jump at the arrival of earlier game-changing achievements like the arrival of television, computer-generated animation, video games, and the Internet, so there’s no reason to treat the arrival of the age of VR and the metaverse differently.

Among other new appointments at Disney that hint at the potential you see in this technology Erin Green, Head of Communications for Mixed Reality Research (MR) at Meta (Facebook). The appointment of senior staff to this level shows that Disney is serious about establishing itself as a major player in the metaverse industry – an industry that is expect It could be worth $13 trillion by 2030. Moreover, Disney was too highlighted As the company most interested in hiring AR and VR employees during the first quarter of 2022.

The next generation of storytelling

Storytelling is at the heart of everything that has made Disney such a great company, and it stands to reason that it would be the backbone of its compensatory strategy. However, when people think of Disney stories, they are more likely to think first of the negative experiences of its films and TV shows. However, CEO Bob Chuck made it clear that he intends to change this, having said recently during earnings call: “We know it’s going to be a less of a passive experience where you just have a run, whether it’s a sporting event or whether it’s an entertainment show and more of an interactive experience that’s flexible and active.”

A number of virtual reality experiences have already been created based on Disney properties, perhaps the most notable Tales from the Galaxy’s Edge Star Wars experience. While it’s not a true metaverse experience, limited to a single player, it shows that Disney is serious about VR capabilities. Some have suggested that recent brand implementations suggest that a metaverse experience of some kind based on the Marvel brand is also in development and could be revealed soon.

Blockchain and NFTs

Many fans of the metaverse concept think so Blockchain and related technologies such as Irreplaceable icons (NFTs) will play a large role in the new worlds that are being built. This is because they enable virtual worlds (and anything else virtual, really) to be built with a degree of decentralization – freedom from the central control of any one authority. In Disney’s case, you would probably want to maintain central control over their own digital environments – if they were to create a virtual theme park, for example. But NFTs, in particular, also have the potential to create unique digital holdings and limited-edition virtual assets. All the things that fans of the Disney brands are known to appreciate! The company has already created a series of NFTs called golden moments, celebrates some of her beloved characters and moments from her films. Unlike the huge range of traditional physical holdings that a company sells, these collectibles are designed to continue to provide revenue for the company. Thanks to the “smart contract” functionality that can be integrated into NFTs, a six percent fee is charged by Disney each time it is traded or resold between fans and collectors.

Amusement parks and virtual worlds

Chapek said, “We have something that no one else has…our parks. If the metaverse is the blending of the physical and the digital into one environment, who can do it better than Disney?”

In fact, this blending has been going on for a while – visitors to Disney parks, resorts, hotels, and cruise ships have long been able to take advantage of “magic” bracelets that can be used to unlock a variety of virtual and real bracelets in global interactions, as well as store credits that They can be used for purchase in stores and restaurants. It also created a virtual assistant-style app called Jennywhich helps you plan your visit and can create a personalized itinerary, so visitors don’t miss the attractions they are most likely to enjoy.

These can be considered as the building blocks of a metaverse scheme that includes theme parks. More clues can be found in the file Recent patent application. This indicates that the company is interested in building augmented reality environments that do not require users to wear headphones. Depending on the application, this will include a technology known as SLAM – Simultaneous Localization and Mapping. This would theoretically track guests’ movements through a real environment – an amusement park, for example – and use projectors to bring characters to life before their eyes. Similar technology is already used during live performances and parades in parks; The difference here is that the visuals will be assigned to specific visitors, creating a unique experience for the individual.

Disney and the Metaverse – a perfect match?

So, while concrete details about Disney’s plans for metaverses are scarce, as of this writing, it seems clear that plans of one kind or another are afoot. With clever marketing and trading skills, and a thorough understanding of their own strengths and weaknesses, Disney has made the remarkable feat of staying just as important to the children of Generation Z today as it was to the baby-boomer generation that first made it a household name. In recent years, headline-grabbing acquisitions like Marvel and Lucasfilm have given it patronage of enduring favorite brands and characters that are ready to adapt to new technology-driven storytelling experiences. Taken together, these factors ensure that the House of Mouse is well positioned to play a leading role in the development of the metaverse.

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