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How can I buy land and invest in the metaverse?

As NFTs and cryptocurrencies become increasingly popular, more attention is turning to the prospect of a digital universe; but what exactly is the metaverse?

Update:
As NFTs and cryptocurrencies become increasingly popular, more attention is turning to the prospect of a digital universe; but what exactly is the metaverse?
TYRONE SIUREUTERS

Last week Microsoft announced that it was purchasing the prolific but troubled video game company Activision Blizzard in the tech giant’s largest ever acquisition. The cost is thought to be close to $70 billion and Microsoft believes it is betting big on the future of gaming.

The purchase gives Microsoft a real stake in the burgeoning world of the metaverse, a digital universe which spans virtual and augmented realities. The excitement surrounding this new online frontier reached a greater audience towards the end of 2021 when Facebook announced that it was renaming its parent company Meta, in a nod to the metaverse, but what exactly is this new reality?

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What is the metaverse?

The metaverse is not one company’s digital property or unique technology. Rather, the term ‘metaverse’ is used more broadly to describe a range of online experiences, products and environments that are heralded as the future of the internet.

It should be no surprise that this shift to a digital reality was accelerated by the pandemic, with people all around the world forced to find online alternatives to in-person activities. Investors and inventors are currently trying to capitalise on this trend and there are numerous applications for the online-only approach.

As mentioned, video games will likely be a big part of the metaverse, offering a more immersive experience. Owners of non-fungible tokens (NFTs) have a stake in the metaverse, as does anyone who has bought some cryptocurrency. Even simply using a digital avatar for a work meeting on Zoom could be seen as a step into the metaverse.

Venture capitalist Matthew Ball has described the metaverse as a natural advancement of online technology, calling it “a sort of successor state to the mobile internet.”

He adds that there will be “no clean ‘Before Metaverse’ and ‘After Metaverse’… Instead, it will slowly emerge over time as different products, services and capabilities integrate and meld together.”

How to buy land in the metaverse

Anyone who wants to buy a stake in the metaverse has plenty of opportunities to do so, but they should be aware that the unregulated online world has plenty of unscrupulous characters looking to take advantage of the uninitiated.

As is the case with cryptocurrency and NFTs, there is little underpinning the market value of metaverse products, meaning that they are susceptible to volatile price changes and insider trading.

If you do wish to invest some hard-earned money in metaverse real estate, you can do so in three steps…

1. Choose a buying platform – The metaverse is supposed to bring limitless opportunities for users and already there are plenty of options when searching for a platform to buy real estate. Third-party platforms like OpenSea and NonFungible offer the chance to buy up areas of the metaverse and both have virtual land packages, often displayed with an equivalent real world currency value.

2. Load funds into a digital wallet – As is the case in the real world, you’ll need some money in the bank if you want to buy real estate. Metaverse items are typically purchased using cryptocurrency, meaning that you will need to open a wallet with a digital currency that is accepted on your chosen buying platform

3. Make an offer and close the deal – Once you’ve decided on your chosen spot your buying platform of choice will give you options to buy or make an offer for the real estate, depending on the seller’s preference. If your bid is successful and your wallet has sufficient funds you will be prompted to confirm the purchase. Once the payment is approved on the blockchain you will have completed the purchase and have the transaction recorded in your wallet, proving that the digital property is yours.

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