Crypto investment giant Grayscale has issued a report on metaverses which is very bullish – it predicts that the “market opportunity” for the metaverse to join the mainstream could be worth more than $1 trillion in the next few years.
The report, which bears the name “The Metaverse, Web 3.0 Virtual Cloud Economies,” was authored by David Grider, the head of research at Grayscale, and Matt Maximo, a research analyst. The two of them looked at the sector from the perspective of open metaverse worlds that are supported by an “interconnected crypto-economy” like Decentraland.
According to them, the metaverse platforms that have integrated with the world of crypto (crypto tokens, NFTs, decentralized governance and cloud storage, etc.) have “created a new online experience” that is attracting more and more users.
Looking at “global all-time active metaverse wallets” data from the beginning of 2020, it was discovered that the user base has expanded 10x between then and June 2021, when it reached about 50,000.
“Compared to other Web 3.0 and Web 2.0 segments, Metaverse virtual world users are still in their early innings, but if current growth rates remain on their current trajectory, this emerging segment has the potential to become mainstream in the coming years.”
The report also mentions the fact that there are plenty of venture capitalists that are interested in this sector – for example, fundraising reached $1 billion for blockchain gaming in Q3 alone. This is 12% of the total fundraising that took place for all of the crypto sector during this quarter. It is ranked as the “top sub-sector” within the Web 3.0 and NFT category.
Some of the key elements that could lead to the growth of the metaverse sector include the growing average leisure time and money used for digital hobbies, a shift from premium games to free-to-play games, and the innovations of Web 3.0.
For 2020, virtual world gaming gained $180 billion, with $40 billion of those being “premium spending.” It is estimated that the sector will attract over $400 billion by 2025 as a result of the in-game spending model used.
According to the report, this change is “accelerating further with the transition from Web 2.0 closed corporate Metaverses to Web 3.0 open crypto Metaverse networks” thanks to the play-to-earn potential that they come with.
“Web 3.0 Metaverse virtual worlds have benefited from rapid innovation and productivity gains. Crypto virtual worlds have created a multi-million dollar primary and secondary market for creators and asset owners by eliminating capital controls and opening their digital borders to free-market capitalism.”