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The metaverse at Cannes Festival of Creativity in (2022)

VR/AR and metaverse analysis every Wednesday and Sunday // 26 June 2022 

Caffeine jitters are real after Saturday’s cafe sesh; reviewing books becomes more difficult when your notes are illegible. Also, if you are a UK business, consider supporting Innovate UK’s economic survey. 

A can of Cannes

Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity ended and, as expected, it was a tidal wave of web3 and metaverse conversations. 

  • The two-year hiatus did not stop brands and agencies bringing their full force to France. While reality focused on global matters, Cannes attendees explored their views on virtual worlds. 
  • Meta Beach had roundtables on VR as well as implementing a metaverse strategy. Meanwhile, Wunderman Thompson made a virtual beach, DJ booth and all. 
  • ‘The Queen of the Metaverse’ (self-labelled by Paris Hilton) strode into the festival. She remarked that she is ‘ahead of her time.’ I’m included to agree; she is the highest female earner for the sale of an NFT. 
  • While I did not go, I had the impression that companies focused on the hype and potential of immersive technologies, while pushing their own strategies and recommendations. The discussions between the yachts and champagne bottles may sprout more campaigns, between now and next Cannes. We may move from ‘the metaverse has potential’ to ‘here is the potential, fully realised.’ Feel free to chip in your views in the Discord. 

Meta rebranded Facebook Pay to Meta Pay, and outlined its ambitions to make it the ‘digital wallet for the metaverse.’

  • The aspiration is that it will be a universal wallet that can manage your identity, what you own, and how you pay.
  • Apart from his Facebook post, there is not much more info at this time – it is effectively a rebrand of Facebook Wallet, with new bells and whistles. 
  • I do not want to be presumptuous, and overanalyse a statement that is not backed by further details. At the same time, I am curious to see how Meta will implement the metaverse wallet in the future, and what the benefit will be for the company. 

What do you think of Cannes? Join the discussion and meet like-minded professionals on the Immersive Wire Discord. 

The Metaverse: A Professional Guide

As summer comes along, consider an easy read for the weekends. The Metaverse: A Professional Guide sorts the sense from the nonsense, giving experts insights and guidance on how to navigate the burgeoning world of immersive technologies. By the end, you will have a firm grasp of the metaverse and all the contingent technologies that link to its foundations.

Available in all regions. 

Leading with curiosity

Carole Baskin, Founder and CEO of Big Cat Rescue. 

A re-run of my interview in 2020, as this was a fun one. Enjoy! 

At times, I have to remind myself that technology needs to serve a purpose. After wandering through the weeds of VR/AR innovation for several years, diving into the deep details of the tech, I have to remember that there is no point to its existence unless it helps. So having calls with passionate entrepreneurs grounds me back, and I touch back on why we are so invested in our work.

Recently I spoke to Carole Baskin, the founder and CEO of Big Cat Rescue. After her catapult into the mainstream spotlight via Tiger King, Ms Baskin focused on innovation as she sought how technology can meet her ideas of protecting tigers. Working closely with Doug Fajardo, the CEO of Xennial Digital, the team sought a future where people can interact and see any sort of endangered species without the need for protective enclosures.

On asking her where the technology will go, Ms Baskin explored a frictionless future where people can easily access virtual worlds without harming others. “I want this technology to be so easily accessible to so many people that there is not any demand for seeing a wild cat in a cage or in person.” She acknowledges that there needs to be a lot of steps towards it (she remarked, with a chuckle), but once reached it will really benefit animals as a whole.

Read the full piece here. 

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Meditative with the VIVE Flow. Photo credit: Tom Ffiske

Tom Ffiske

Editor, Immersive Wire

Tom Ffiske is the Editor of the Immersive Wire, a weekly newsletter on the immersive industry.