What is the Industrial Metaverse?


As the metaverse emerges and develops, entrepreneurs and small businesses are learning various aspects, and how they might open doors to new opportunities.

One phrase that’s been popping up here and there in the media and online of late is the “industrial metaverse.” Fortunately, MIT Technology Review offers a valuable primer.

This entire report deserves to be read, but here are a few tidbits worth highlighting for now:

Simulation of the industrial sector. The industrial metaverse is defined as “a metaverse sector that mirrors and simulates real machines, factories, cities, transportation networks, and other highly complex systems.”

Value and benefits of the industrial metaverse: “The industrial metaverse will revolutionize the way work is done, but it will also unlock significant new value for business and societies. By allowing businesses to model, prototype, and test dozens, hundreds, or millions of design iterations in real time and in an immersive, physics-based environment before committing physical and human resources to a project, industrial metaverse tools will usher in a new era of solving real-world problems digitally.”

Industrial metaverse applications are clearer: “While real-life applications of the consumer metaverse are still developing, industrial metaverse use cases are purpose-driven, well aligned with real-world problems and business imperatives.”

Investment estimates and outlook: “Analysts define the scope of this emerging market differently, but they all project rapidly growing investment in digital twin technology, a key metaverse building block. The global digital twin market was estimated at $6.5 billion in 2021 and is expected to reach $125.7 billion by 2030, according to Allied Market Research. Gartner offers a similar projection, expecting the digital twin market to grow to $183 billion by 2031, and notes that VC investment in digital twin startups increased 20% from 2020 to 2021.”

Finally, there is some advice for businesses as to where to get started regarding the industrial metaverse. It’s about focusing on what your enterprise’s objectives are:

“Organizations must also determine a value proposition or use case for their industrial metaverse initiatives. As with any emerging technology, there is plenty of buzz surrounding the metaverse and its potential to revolutionize the way businesses operate and people live. By working within the confines of a clear objective – such as minimizing waste or accelerating product development cycles – [Michael Grieves, Executive Director and Chief Scientist, Digital Twin Institute] says organizations can build ‘an understanding of what’s real, what’s not real, and what’s hype’ when it comes to the industrial metaverse.”

And of course, it’s about “assembling the talent, technologies, and strategies” needed “to participate in the emerging industrial metaverse.”