The latest news and updates about Metavrse.

VR/AR Consultancy MetaVRse Named TechWeek Top 100 Rising Startup

North America’s leading virtual and augmented reality consultancy and inventors of the hottest new experiential marketing product, VR Photo Booth™ have just won the prestigious TechWeek Top 100 in the Rising Startup category.  In only one short year, Toronto based MetaVRse, has worked with a number of Fortune 100 companies producing a diverse range of branded VR and AR experiences.  “In the early days of VR education is paramount. We used events to expose as many people as possible to VR to open our clients’ minds to the potential of this technology to go far beyond entertainment” commented MetaVRse President and Co-Founder, Dan Flatt. “We begin by showing people games and experiences, then we show them training, communication, and collaboration tools, there is a process to getting people interested in using VR/AR in their business, it has to have real ROI”.

“The ultimate potential of this technology is infinite.”

Investments in the VR/AR industry exceeded $2B in 2016 and the industry is on track to grow over 100% annually.  With major tech giants like Google,  Facebook, Samsung and most recently Apple launching new technology in the space, analysts are predicting that VR and AR will supplant mobile as the world’s dominant computing platform as early as 2022. While the consumer entertainment market has seen steady growth, businesses are embracing the potential of immersive experiences for marketing, training, design and more.

Instead of the obvious gaming and entertainment markets, MetaVRse has decided to take a different approach, “The ultimate potential of this technology is infinite.” said Alan Smithson, CEO and Co-Founder, “Enterprise applications for education, training, remote collaboration, communication, vCommerce, data visualization, sales, and marketing are where we have decided to focus our practice.  Our mission at MetaVRse is to use virtual and augmented reality to improve the human experience and we feel we can do this best by working with large companies to bring custom solutions on scale.”

MetaVRse CEO Featured in Book about Virtual Reality

MetaVRse CEO, Alan Smithson was recently featured in the new book, “What is Virtual Reality?: Everything you wanted to know featuring interviews with the leaders of the VR industry” By Yoni Binstock. Here’s the excerpt:

What excites you the most about virtual reality?

The thing that excites me most about virtual reality is the fact that it’s a new communication media. It’s a new way for humans to communicate with each other and the social implications of being able to communicate with people in a much more immersive way will be incredible. Just in the past few decades, we saw the introduction of communication mediums like text messaging and Skyping which changed how we communicated and I believe brought people together. But placing people together in the same place will be amazing. The other thing that excites me, and why I started MetaVRse, is the way that VR will revolutionize education.

What do you recommend for people who want to get in the VR field?

The first thing I always recommend is to listen to the Voices of VR podcast. There are a ton of episodes to listen to, but if you listen to the early episodes or the top ten, you’ll get a really good understanding of where the industries are going and who the players are. I would also say to start building something or writing about the technology. Because the technology and industry move so fast, everyone, including myself, will have to constantly be learning.

What are your predictions for the VR industry and technology in the next 5, 10, and 25 years?

In the next 5 years, my prediction is that consumer VR markets will be growing, but not take off as fast as we all hope. It’s absolutely amazing how many units the HTC Vive, the Oculus Rift, and the PSVR have sold, but it’s nowhere near the adoptions we need to get mass adoption. I would predict that we’re going to have businesses use this technology a lot more than individuals, especially with training, data visualization, and marketing. I also think when Steven Spielberg releases the Ready Player One movie, that will create a huge tidal wave of VR adoption. Lastly, I see houses and living rooms being designed to maximize VR experiences so that users will have great tracking and freedom of movement.

In 10 years, I think what’s going to happen is all the AR glasses will get smaller, lighter, faster, cheaper, and just generally better. I think the adoption is going to be a lot better especially in business because the business applications for AR are enormous. I can imagine any business using AR to increase the productivity of their workforce. Microsoft’s Hololens is an incredible technical achievement and I think that the technology will only get better. And so what we’ll see is the convergence of AR and VR where you’ll have one device being used for all types of mixed reality based on where you are and what application you’re using.

In 25 years, my best guess is that we will probably have our brains and computers connected so that experiences will be so immersive that it will be hard to separate it from reality. Today everybody’s working on how to make haptic suits and gloves, but if a machine has direct control of your brains, that we can make these 100% realistic experiences without the need for any external hardware.

In what ways do you think that virtual reality will be a positive force in our society and in what ways will it be a negative force?

I think the biggest way that virtual reality is going to be a positive force is by completely overhauling the education system. My purpose in life is to educate the next generation of young entrepreneurs to go on and create value in an environmentally, economically, socially sustainable way, and one of the reasons I got into VR is because VR is going to be the next way to teach people. It’s not enough to look at lectures or participate in an online course, but being able to experience and do something in a virtual space will finally make learning fun for everyone. The other day I learned how to fix a fridge using a VR application and it was so incredible. Before I would have had to call an electrician or spend hours reviewing the manual, but with this VR app, I was able to learn extremely quickly how my fridge worked and what to do to fix it.

I also see VR as an empathy machine, putting people in situations where they feel empathy for others, and I think that’s a really really big thing and that we’ve only scratched the surface on what we can do with this amazing technology.

Virtual reality can definitely be used for evil. Some of my friends made the Brookhaven Experiment where you are shooting zombies, and originally they made a simulator where you are shooting humans and they said it was so disturbing that they actually vowed never to make another shooter game where you shot humans. Like any technology, it can be used for good or for evil.

What needs to happen fairly quickly is we need to come together as an entire industry and we need to develop the ethical standards around VR. It is such a powerful media and if it is harnessed by the wrong people, you’re going to really mess with people and it’s going to go wrong real fast. I imagine that if someone violated the standards, they might be banned from ever using Unity or another game engine.

If there’s anything else you’d like to share with my readers about the future of VR, what would you like to say?

In the beginning, we had the printing press and the printing press brought people together and brought a new communication medium. Then we had the radio, the television, the internet, the smartphone, and now we have virtual reality which is going to change everything we do in the world. My suggestion to everybody is to get on it as early as possible and to build as fast as possible. By being one of the first in this industry, you’ll be able to be part of the story of how this technology and industry mature over the next several decades.

VR/AR Association Interview with Alan Smithson and Dan Flatt

Want to learn more about the business of Virtual and Augmented Reality and how MetaVRse started? Check out the latest “Everything VR & AR” podcast with AlanDan, host Kevin Harvell, and the VR/AR Association.


The Decision to Rebrand MetaVRse

When MetaVRse was founded in early 2016, we had a goal of becoming the world’s most advanced and futuristic virtual reality arcade. We delved deep into the new world of VR; learning, experimenting, and pushing the technology to its limits. It quickly became apparent that VR’s potential wasn’t well understood, and while the industry’s focus on virtual reality for gaming had given the platform traction with consumers, it had left a void in solutions for business and marketing – and we weren’t the only ones to notice. Without any major authorities in the industry to turn to, brands we had connected with began contacting us to create new content and applications to use in their content and experiential marketing campaigns. From there, our direction slowly began shifting from virtual reality for entertainment to virtual and augmented reality for business.

The decision to rebrand

The original Metavrse arcade-styled branding

The original MetaVRse branding was comprised of surreal imagery and futuristic display fonts mixed with a slight 80’s retro VR style, built around an overall space theme, and a primarily red/black palette. This worked well for us during our entertainment stages but became increasingly irrelevant as time went on. Here’s why:

Problem: Red
In colour psychology, red generally elicits a passionate response in the observer. However, the emotion associated with the response varies from person to person and may be perceived as either positive or negative. For some, red demonstrates excitement, strength, power, and energy. For others, red demonstrates aggression, conceit, dominance, and warning – particularly when used in tandem with black. With our newfound path along the business and enterprise side of VR & AR, we determined there were other colours that communicated our message much more vividly than red.

Problem: Arcade Design Style
Simply put, big, bold fonts and surreal images of VR headsets floating in front of a nebula also didn’t portray the message we wanted to communicate. The style was eye-catching, but was designed for an arcade.

Problem: Irrelevant Tagline
The MetaVRse logo consists of three elements: the stylized AV embedded into the wordmark with the tagline hanging out below. It was designed to be versatile – either the entire logo can be used or just the AV symbol. The AV represents the two core parts of our business: Augmented and Virtual reality. The original tagline, Elevate Reality, didn’t speak to what we do and, as such, was scrapped.

Refined mission, refined branding

The new MetaVRse logo

Solution: Blue

After numerous concepts and colour combinations, it was ultimately decided that the new colour should be in the blue spectrum, and landed on a variation of cyan. Cyan maintains its blue roots but is far enough away on the spectrum to avoid being perceived as a ‘safe and corporate’ blue. When used as an accent, cyan represents our creative ability while being offset a carefully crafted neutral colour pallete and minimal design style. Additionally, blue-spectrum colours nearly always elicit a positive response in the observer. This colour demonstrates creativity, inspiration, innovation, energy, success, infinity, and both modernism and futurism – which aligns with MetaVRse‘s current path and principles.

Solution: Clean and Minimal Designs

The new brand design style is minimal and precise, and now primarily uses a neutral colour palette with subtle hints of cyan as an accent. It departs from the former arcade style and, instead, introduces a unique classy/futuristic mixture that represents our values and speaks to our desired public perception. The colour palette coupled with the new design style communicates the message that we are creative, serious leaders – and we mean business.

Design Concept: Sales Slick

Design Concept: Brochure

Solution: Updated Tagline

Finally, while the core of the logo remains unchanged (aside from a colour change), the tagline has been revamped to reflect both core parts of the business: virtual + augmented reality. The use of the plus sign subconsciously indicates that VR and AR both play key roles in the equation to our solutions. Although somewhat contradictory to the AV symbol, the tagline begins with virtual instead of augmented because of the popularity and dominance of VR. But who knows, maybe once AR rises in popularity we’ll refresh the tagline again.


360° Photo Booth™ Nominated for 2 Marketing Awards

We are proud to announce that our 360° Photo Booth™ has been nominated for two awards;  the Marketing and Atomic Award.

The MetaVRse 360° Photo Booth™ at Yorkdale Shopping Center, dressed up as a time machine from Global’s new TV show, Timeless

Shoppers at Toronto’s Yorkdale Shopping Center had a chance to enter a time machine to travel back through history and still make it back in time for a trip to the food court. In a first-of-its-kind promotion of Global TV’s new time-travel drama Timeless, fans were invited to view the show’s trailer in a VR headset before entering a life-size replica of “the Mothership,” the show’s futuristic, spherical time machine. Once inside, rather than the show’s complex array of dials and displays, time travelers entered a bright green room with a central column of light containing a very different kind of advanced technology – a 360° camera. As the passengers disembarked from the time machine, they were invited to a large touch screen to explore a 360° scene of themselves standing on a country road as the Hindenburg airship explodes above their heads. The unique 360° photo keepsake (containing a subtle brand message for the premiere of Timeless on Global TV) was then sent to participants in a format easily shared to social media.

Over 1000 visitors entered the booth over a 3 day activation that captured over 300 360° Photos which were sent to guests to share on social media. Many of the guests shared their photos to Facebook and Twitter generating over 50,000 media impressions attracting more awareness to the series premiere of Timeless.

This video was submitted with the award submission: