Tech Giants Unite to Cooperate on Interoperability Standards for An Open Metaverse

The Metaverse Standards Forum has been formed to foster the development of standards to build the open metaverse.
Image source: Metaverse Standards Forum

Quick take:

  • Founding members of the Metaverse Standards Forum include Adobe, Epic Games, Meta, Microsoft, NVIDIA, and many more.
  • The Forum will explore where the lack of interoperability is holding back metaverse deployment.
  • The Forum is open to any organisation at no cost.

Leading tech companies have united today to announce the formation of the Metaverse Standards Forum, which brings together leading tech organisations and companies for industry-wide cooperation on interoperability standards needed to build the open metaverse.

Hosted by Standard Developing Organisation (SDO), The Khronos Group, the Forum will explore how the lack of interoperability is holding back metaverse deployment and how the definition of evolving standards can be accelerated by SDOs.

There are more than 37 founding members of the Forum, including obvious ones such as Adobe, Alibaba, Epic Games, Huawei, Meta, Microsoft, NVIDIA, OpenAR Cloud, Qualcomm Technologies, Sony Interactive Entertainment, and Unity. Oddly, IKEA is also on the list. Surprisingly, leading metaverse platforms such as The Sandbox, Decentraland and Roblox are not yet members.

Open to any organisation free of charge, the Forum will focus on pragmatic, action-based projects such as implementation prototyping, hackathons, plugfests, and open-source tooling to accelerate the testing and adoption of metaverse standards. It will also be developing consistent terminology and deployment guidelines.

The metaverse is driving the integration and deployment of diverse technologies for collaborative spatial computing, such as interactive 3D graphics, augmented and virtual reality, photorealistic content authoring, geospatial systems, end-user content tooling, digital twins, real-time collaboration, physical simulation, online economies, multi-user gaming, and more.

These technologies have scaled virtual environments to new levels of immersiveness. However, multiple industry leaders believe that the potential of the metaverse can only be fully realised on a foundation of open standards. 

The building of an inclusive metaverse will demand an open interoperability standard created by SDOs such as The Khronos Group, the World Wide Web Consortium, the Open Geospatial Consortium, the Open AR Cloud, the Spatial Web Foundation, and many others.

“The metaverse will bring together diverse technologies, requiring a constellation of interoperability standards, created and maintained by many standards organizations,” said Neil Trevett, Khronos president. “The Metaverse Standards Forum is a unique venue for coordination between standards organizations and industry, with a mission to foster the pragmatic and timely standardization that will be essential to an open and inclusive metaverse.”

The Forum’s activities will involve diverse technology domains such as 3D assets and rendering, human interface and interaction paradigms such as AR and VR, user-created content, avatars, identity management, privacy, and financial transactions. Forum meetings are expected to start in July 2022.

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