It looks like Mark Zuckerberg is about to gain some major competition in the metaverse. Other governments have thrown their hat into the metaverse, including South Korea. However, China’s Shanghai is seemingly going all in, with the city is pouring in $1.5 billion to make it happen.
Shanghai’s metaverse could launch in 2025
A report from The South China Morning Post says that the Shanghai government is planning to kickstart their own metaverse and is using 10 billion yuan to do it, which equates to $1.5 billion. This will all be for metaverse development, as Shanghai is planning to work on metaverse products and services, low-carbon energy projects, and smart terminal technology.
“[Industries] such as the metaverse and smart terminals are expected to constantly spur new business schemes and models,” said Wu Jincheng, head of Shanghai’s Economy and Information Technology Committee, at a July 8 press conference. “[These would] give rise to ‘killer’ applications and popular products, releasing huge market value.”
Financing is expected to go to creating 10 “leading” companies and 100 small-sized firms, which are expected to specialize in “benchmarking products and services.” Shanghai is hoping to have these metaverse products and services on sale by 2025.
Can the metaverse save China’s economy?
Due to the recent COVID-19 subvariant hitting China hard, the country’s stock and commodities dropped in a big way. It’s why Shanghai is hellbent on making the metaverse a thing, hoping to make a ton of profit and make things better. The country sees a huge market value in the metaverse, with hopes that the combined effort on the metaverse, its products, and its services can make up to $224 billion by 2025.
While Shanghai appears to be going all-in on the metaverse to save China’s economy, it is interesting to note that the country doesn’t feel the same way about cryptocurrency. Granted, Chinese companies like Tencent are still investing in crypto but it seems that the country wants to steer away from it, to the point that they issued a warning about them being tied to the metaverse.
How will Shanghai's metaverse compete with Zuckerberg's? It'll take a few years before we can say anything.