Pitched as Internet 2.0, The Metaverse aims to push everything online into interconnected VR worlds, abandoning the current streamlined 2D experience. As investors funnel money into the tech, major brands are attempting to enter The Metaverse, such as Adidas and Boeing. However, none are as soul-crushing as Walmart Metaverse Shopping.
Walmart Metaverse Shopping demo revealed
Revealed at SXSW in Austin, Texas, Walmart's virtual reality shopping experience showcases a futuristic way of buying groceries. Instead of simply looking at an online, the company wants to immerse you in a fully 3D supermarket.
The video shows an alternative shopping experience where a virtual Walmart employee helps the user navigate multiple product sections. For example, the video starts with the user buying some pasta sauce. After selecting the sauce, the virtual assistant suggests a specific wine tasting.
There are some neat ideas hidden in the Walmart Metaverse Shopping experience. When picking the wine, your Walmart profile already has your age. Additionally, when picking up some milk, the virtual assistant checks your Smart Fridge, notices you already have milk and informs you. Of course, it's unlikely a supermarket chain would advise you against buying a product.
The demo ends with the user being taken to the “Technology Section”. Walmart’s virtual assistant recommends a TV with great reviews and then recommends accessories for the device. At the end, the user is asked to pay through Walmart Pay.
Just shop online, weirdo
While the Metaverse Shopping experience has some cool ideas, the idea as a whole is just unneeded. Compared to the simple and accessible form of modern online shopping, Metaverse Shopping adds extra complicated steps.
For example, having to pick up and place individual items in and out of a basket one by one takes longer than just clicking on the item you need on a 2D list. Additionally, why would anyone want to put on a VR helmet to shop when you can just pull out your phone in a few seconds?
The Walmart Metaverse Shopping demo shows that The Metaverse isn't making life easier. In fact, it's making life more complicated and inaccessible in order to sell a new product. Investors want to sell The Metaverse, and that means the general public will need to deal with a more complicated future.