Realising the shortcomings of Web 2.0 and the potential of Web 3.0, we are certain that the next iteration of the web is the need of the hour
But, how can this void be filled between the two ecosystems? How can the transition be fluid and seamless?
Several major Web 2.0 companies in the last two to three years have managed to bridge this gap by entering Web 3.0 via the metaverse
The world of science fiction has always amused people with its innovative concepts from authors across the globe from time to time. Some of those have even become true, astonishing people as a result. Every element of the Web 3.0 space might have been inspired by such futuristic stories, which continue to evolve as we transition from the centralised Web 2.0 era to the decentralised Web 3.0 era. With this, the question arises, how can we bridge the gap between Web 2.0 and Web 3.0?
To begin bridging this gap, one must first understand the differences between Web 2.0 and Web 3.0.
What Exactly Is Web 2.0?
Web 2.0, simply put, is the second stage of internet development that involves the evolution from basic, static web pages to increasingly dynamic pages with user-generated content. It also includes the growth of social media as an important type of internet communication.
Web 2.0 allows users to mobilise their technology while providing the opportunity to send and receive complex information in a single moment. Having introduced ease and simplicity, Web 2.0 took the world by storm following what some refer to as the “dotcom bubble” that was Web 1.0.
And Web 3.0?
Web 3.0 is defined as decentralised networks and artificial intelligence that place power and security at the heart of every transaction. Web 3.0 has transformed the meaning of trust and security with the ever-developing encryption and advanced data tracking technology.
In other words, Web 3.0 has created a digital world that allows users to connect on a deeper level than ever before while providing a level of protection that has never before been provided. Interaction and engagement in a whole new world, the metaverse, is now available to all. Web 3.0 takes Web 2.0 and elevates it in a way that gives power back to the people, all while building on the pillars of our common-place digital networking tools.
The Web Is Broken!
Organisations and their data and ideas currently dominate the internet. Personal data is commercialised, and their algorithms easily manipulate public opinion. These lead to the following concerns for Web 2.0 users:
- Monopoly, censorship and control: 90% of websites are hosted by just a handful of companies that support Facebook, Twitter, Airbnb, Uber, Reddit, and Netflix. If they choose to, they can block platforms and users from using their services. Moreover, centralised entities/governments can block a website in any region as they wish resulting in having no power over the users.
- Content ownership and data loss: Service providers own everything a content creator says and posts — including profile data, images, publications, and even revenue share. Companies can shut down and walk away making it inaccessible for users to look at their data again. For instance, if Facebook decides to shut down today we will lose all the data that we’ve collected over the years including profile details, chats etc.
- The threat of hacking: Data (billions of records) created by different owners reside in centralised storage that criminals can hack into or commit fraud. Gartner’s research states that $172 Bn was spent managing cyber security and mitigating threats in 2022. This number will only keep growing as the number of data hacks increases.
- Misinformation: The Web 2.0 internet has led to an increase in misformation that has been manipulated worldwide by users and governments to influence web 2.0 users. This has polarised society and led to criminal and destructive opportunities for others to gain at the expense of others, whether financial, physical or mental harm.
Realising the shortcomings of Web 2.0 and the potential of Web 3.0, we are certain that the next iteration of the web is the need of the hour. But, how can this void be filled between the two ecosystems? How can the transition be fluid and seamless?
Metaverse To The Rescue!
The metaverse is having a moment. The worldwide metaverse market size is estimated to reach over $1607 Bn by 2030, with revenues rising at a CAGR of 43.3% during the forecast period, according to Emergen Research.
Most metaverses today have been part of the broader blockchain world as these platforms are based on such distributed digital ledgers. Cryptocurrencies, for instance, tend to form an integral part of blockchain-based metaverse applications as they serve as in-world currencies. People can purchase virtual assets (which are registered as non-fungible tokens) such as apparel, property, and equipment using cryptocurrencies.
Web 3.0 calls for full decentralisation, and utilising cryptocurrencies will only justify the cause. Crypto tokens can also be beneficial for exhibiting proof of ownership, collectibility, governance, interoperability, and transfer of value within the metaverse application.
Over the past two to three years, many major Web 2.0 companies have entered Web 3.0 via the metaverse. Ever since Facebook changed its name to Meta, the metaverse has become a big attraction for Web 2.0 organisations and substantial brands.
Web 3.0 is different from Web 2.0 in that it’s decentralised. Instead of corporations owning users’ data and using it for their own means, a blockchain is used to keep it secure and encrypted, meaning no one can access it.
Web 3.0 ensures users’ data does not fall into the hands of other companies and allows users to participate within an ecosystem without compromising their personal information or their privacy. There is no central entity in control and people can participate in an ecosystem that allows them to earn from it
It’s no wonder global brands like Nike and Coca-Cola and Web 2.0 giants like Facebook and Twitter are riding the Metaverse wave.
How Will Metaverse Help Build A Bridge Between Web 2.0 And Web 3.0?
The metaverse could revolutionise training and skill development, drastically compressing the time needed to develop and acquire new skills. AI-enabled digital coaches could be on-hand to assist in employee training and with career advice. In the metaverse, every object, like a training manual, machine, or product, could be made to be interactive, providing 3-D displays and step-by-step “how to” guides.
As the current version of the internet continues to evolve towards Web 3.0, Web 2.0 companies are also starting to find ways of leveraging blockchain technologies in their business models and the metaverse is for sure playing a vital role in this transition.
The following points provide insight into the commercial potential of developing a metaverse platform for Web 2.0 companies:
- A more immersive educational experience can be provided for fields such as education, medicine, the military and other trades. The metaverse will supply the necessary framework, so they won’t need to build their own.
- Since virtual events have become more popular over the past two years, they can offer more comprehensive options.
- An interactive shopping experience that supports more sophisticated products can help retail firms expand their market.
- Through digitally augmented workspaces, businesses may improve employee engagement, collaboration, and connection.
- The metaverse, where users may communicate through three-dimensional avatars, could be the new home for social networking activities.
As we have witnessed a huge growth in metaverses in recent times, the future looks promising, with many tech corporations pouring in billions of dollars as investments to realise their dream virtual worlds. New use cases roll out almost every day, and research is underway to find paths to creating metaverses that could be closer to the vision of Utopia. It will surely help fill the void between Web 2.0 and Web 3.0 and will make the transition convenient and easy to a great extent. Therefore, we can say that Metaverse development will be instrumental in making Web 3.0 a household name.