- The forum’s founding members include big pre-metaverse entities like Nvidia, World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), Sony Interactive Entertainment, Unity, and Qualcomm.
- The forum expresses its interest in formalizing metaverse development as a unified field.
A standards group for “metaverse” tech is being formed by organizations like Epic Games, Microsoft, Meta, and 33 other companies. The Metaverse Standards Forum plans to promote open, interoperable standards for augmented and virtual reality, geospatial and 3D tech.
According to their press release, the Metaverse Standards Forum will focus on “pragmatic, action-based projects” such as prototyping tools and hackathons that support common standards. The forum has shown interest in developing “consistent terminology” for the space.
The forum’s founding members include big pre-metaverse entities like Nvidia, World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), Sony Interactive Entertainment, Unity, and Qualcomm, in addition to newer companies like Lamina1, a blockchain payments startup co-founded by Neal Stephenson, the author of Snow Crash.
Though it’s missing a few big names. Nick Statt of Protocol rightly pointed out that there is no sign of Apple that’s working on AR and VR tech. Niantic and Roblox, which have taken significant steps in combining virtual worlds and games, are also absent. Other companies are also expected to join before the forum starts its operation. Meetings and discussions are scheduled to begin in 2022.
Metaverse is the catch term for virtual worlds that include VR, AR, and many other subfields that already have standard bodies, some of which have joined the Metaverse Standards Forum. The open standard does not necessarily mean that the firms will create the metaverse as an interlinked space like the World Wide Web. For example, Epic describes its game Fortnite as a “self-contained metaverse.” Open standards will help developers effortlessly build the same content for different platforms and users to export data from one service to another.
The forum expresses its interest in formalizing metaverse development as a unified field. It hints at which kind of companies are interested in creating the standards for it —or at least those that want to be seen supporting these standards.
The group stated in a press release, “Industry leaders have stated that the potential of the metaverse will be best realized if it is built on a foundation of open standards. Building an open and inclusive metaverse at a pervasive scale will demand a constellation of open interoperability standards.”