Digital Adoption Platform
The next evolution of technology is upon us, and business leaders are racing to understand new concepts like Web 3.0 and Metaverse – both generating strong reactions from hype acceptance to extreme cynicism. Regardless, organizations that explore the business benefits, experiment early, and work with the right partners are bound to see the full potential of both.
In the coming years, we expect to see business adoption of Web 3.0 and Metaverse in some form or another, as they evolve and expand business boundaries.
Watch this on-demand webinar as our experts deliver their perspectives on Web 3.0 and Metaverse and provide actionable insights to enterprises, service providers, and technology vendors.
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Big changes are coming as Europe moves toward digital empowerment by 2030. Governments are building frameworks for the regulation of emerging technologies to protect consumers and companies while promoting innovation and digital leadership. What impact will the drive toward technology sovereignty have on BigTech providers, buyers, and investors? Read on for the latest in our series on technology sovereignty.
In our last blog, we explored the emerging and growing focus on technology sovereignty in the United Kingdom and Ireland (UK&I) and European markets. Let’s continue our discussion of this important topic.
The focus on Europe’s data sovereignty is back in the spotlight as a result of new European Union (EU) rules to limit big online platforms’ market power. The risk of global cyber-attacks by Russia as retaliation against Ukraine also has made this an issue to watch.
Europe’s latest moves for technology regulation are not in isolation. Representatives from business, politics, and science from Europe and around the globe have already been working together since 2019 to create a federated and secure data infrastructure through the GAIA-X initiative.
With data security, privacy, and technology sovereignty becoming key issues for the region, Europe is setting up new regulatory frameworks to protect consumers and companies, while trying to ensure a competitive market and encouraging innovation.
Under consideration by the European Commission, the DMA intends to ensure a higher degree of competition in the European Digital Markets, by preventing large companies from abusing their power and by allowing new players to enter the market.
Beyond the hyperbole that surrounds any technology regulation, the DMA provisions include:
In addition to DMA, the EU reached a consensus on the Digital Services Act (DSA) in April, which focuses on setting up a standard for the accountability of online platforms regarding illegal and harmful content. If voted into law, the DSA will apply across the EU within fifteen months or from January 1, 2024, whichever is later. Meanwhile, the DMA likely will go into effect next summer.
While these acts are significant steps in Europe’s focus on curbing the perceived monopolistic power of BigTech, they are part of larger movements such as:
We expect this conversation on the regulation of emerging technologies to evolve and shape the future of technology spending and strategies in the region.
Owing to these triggers and the broader conversation around technology regulation, sovereignty, and BigTech reach, we expect the following three implications for buyers, providers, and investors in the European technology space:
We anticipate a floodgate of activities as we approach implementation timelines in the next 12-18 months. This will create a one-time discontinuity in the market and result in additional spending on compliance. However, market participants will be wise to consider the long-term impact of technology regulation in Europe on their strategies.
You can also tune in to our webinar, Discover 5 Ways to Transform Your Workforce and Location Strategy Amid Global Uncertainties, for key insights and strategies that global talent leaders can use to readjust their workforce strategies.
Most IT technology in organizations focuses on helping to improve the efficiency of the organization. However, as digital transformation takes hold, we can now see that a significant portion of these new IT investments focus on building technology platforms that allow organizations to compete for customers. These new “growth-focused” investments behave differently than their efficiency-focused cousins. They create a more dynamic relationship between technology and the business and evolve at a faster rate, often in less predictable ways. This new relationship between the business and technology increasingly calls for a different governance, investment, and management philosophy.
The global IT services industry has emerged from two-plus years of a global pandemic to establish itself as even more vital to the success of enterprise IT organizations. As corporate IT looks to manage unrelenting demand for technology-enabled change in a challenging talent environment, outsourcing partnerships have proved pivotal.
“Companies are finding it exceedingly hard to find skilled talent especially in the US and Europe, and consequently outsourcing (and offshoring) are becoming important for companies to access talent in labor markets such as India,” says Jimit Arora, Partner at Everest Group.
Metaverse is here to stay, and it’s going to play a significant future role in how we experience brands virtually. Industry giants are investing big in this space, and it is creating new opportunities for service providers to build feature-packed solutions for their customers entering the Meta world. Read on to learn about the potential and pitfalls of Metaverse eCommerce and why gaining a first-mover advantage is critical.
Digital commerce owes its maturity to the ever-evolving technology ecosystem – starting with the first online dial-up transaction on a modified television to a plethora of innovations over the past decade like mobile commerce, voice search, and social commerce. Emerging concepts such as gaming commerce and recommerce or reverse commerce are further defining the ecosystem.
Digital commerce is also witnessing an era of hyper-personalization powered by Artificial Intelligence (AI). According to Everest Group research on the Top 15 Start-ups Redefining Shoppable Experiences, 70% of the start-ups in the ecosystem are leveraging AI to offer enhanced solutions.
Enterprises are offering immersive buying experiences through Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality (AR/VR). To continue progressing on this trajectory, technological alignment is inevitable for a futuristic eCommerce strategy, and the next logical step for attaining this is Metaverse.
Defining metaverse and its significance in eCommerce
Exhibit 1: Definition of Metaverse
In simple terms, Metaverse is an extension of technologies such as AR, VR, blockchain, cryptocurrency, and social commerce coming together to form a virtual world, where customers can shop, play games, and socialize with friends.
Popularized by video games and fiction novels, the idea of Meta has been around since the early 90s, but recently, the industry has become extremely bullish on Metaverse primarily due to two major contributors. Firstly, technologies backing the concept of Meta (blockchain, crypto, and affordable VR) have attained significant headway in the past decade. Secondly, the idea has gained mainstream momentum because industry giants such as Facebook (Meta), Google, and Microsoft are pouring huge investments into Meta-platforms. Experience management leader, Adobe, has also put its best foot forward towards the Meta world by offering tools specific to 3D content creation, experience delivery, asset management, and commerce.
The Meta wave began in the early 2000s with games like Second Life and World of Warcraft, which were based on centralized economies where the value of owned assets was limited to those games. Aiming to overcome this deficiency, Decentraland came into existence in 2020. This platform offered a decentralized economy, where along with building virtual worlds, trading assets, and hosting events, users could transfer purchases to other Meta platforms like The Sandbox. Although the latest version of Meta provides numerous opportunities for users, we are still far away from creating an Omniverse like the movie “Ready Player One.”
Despite the technology being in its infancy, Metaverse holds significant potential in the digital commerce space. In the current 2D eCommerce model, information is consumed rather than experienced, restricting brands from creating physical connections with users.
Metaverse can solve this problem to a very large extent. In Meta-commerce, shoppers can truly experience a company’s culture, design, and branding elements. This will create huge brand differentiation beyond what is currently limited to logos and banners.
Although the technology backing Metaverse is still at a nascent stage, it holds immense potential to build an immersive commerce platform where products will come alive and personalized customer engagement will create brand loyalists.
Brands advocating metaverse are already pioneering virtual commerce
Envisioning the macro future implications of a single worldwide Metaverse, forward-looking brands have already started creating virtual commerce experiences at the company level. Here are some examples:
Potential challenges in realizing metaverse
Exhibit 2: Challenges pertaining to Metaverse implementation
To make Metaverse a reality, several challenges need to be overcome. These include:
Along with these obstacles, challenges related to hardware, use-case identification, slow adoption, lack of capital, a fragmented tech landscape, unpredictable Return on Investment (ROI), and legal implications will surely make it difficult to turn the virtual world into a reality.
But on the brighter side, the foundational infrastructure is already in place in the form of a sophisticated global blockchain network, ergonomic VR design, scalable AI, and last-mile internet connectivity in most parts of the world. Therefore, Meta is no longer a far-fetched dream. And with most industry giants strategically investing in the concept, the challenges associated with it will get mitigated very soon.
Opportunities for eCommerce service providers in this meta wave
This new world is pushing IT service providers, consulting firms, and design agencies towards attaining Metaverse eCommerce capabilities. These industry players will be able to add several new digital service offerings through Metaverse. A few of these services include:
An exciting future
Brands are already implementing core technologies essential for Meta in silos. Soon, we will witness their integration to create an alternate world full of endless possibilities.
Metaverse is here to stay, and it will bring a multitude of opportunities for service providers to build feature-packed solutions for their customers entering the Meta world. Enterprises need to seize the first-mover advantage now by swiftly evaluating the future impact of Metaverse on their businesses.
Discover more about how organizations are increasingly finding ways to incorporate elements of the metaverse in our blogs: Enterprise Metaverse: Myriad Possibilities or Problems for the Hybrid Workplace? and Metaverse: Opportunities and Key Success Factors for Technology Services Providers.
To further discuss Metaverse eCommerce opportunities, contact us.