Significantly more Chinese consumers—56%—are familiar with the term metaverse as compared to consumers in the UK—31%—and US—26% according to Wunderman Thompson Data. Additionally, 94% of Chinese consumers believe that tech is our future. Banks and brands in Asian Pacific regions are making major changes to their platforms and communities in preparation for the metaverse, altering the focus of their investments and societal connections.

94% of Chinese consumers believe that tech is our future.

Wunderman Thompson Data

WEB Concert World
Zepeto

Banks and financial firms are investing heavily in metaverse platforms, anticipating its economic power. In November, SoftBank invested $150 million in the South Korean metaverse platform Zepeto. The mobile app has about 2 million active users a day in Asia, and flaunts a particularly high female user-base, which the company attributes to selling high-fashion digital items for online avatars. Clothing and accessories from Gucci, Dior, and Ralph Lauren are popular collections available on the app for purchase. Softbank also invested in a Hong Kong based gaming platform in November. The bank led a $93 million investment round for The Sandbox, the NFT gaming platform where users can build and own their own virtual property.

WEB The Sandbox Characters
Sandbox characters

True metasocieties are advancing as cities and governments build out their communities in the virtual realm. Seoul announced in November that it would be the first city government to enter the metaverse. In its digital city duplicate, citizens will find entertainment, cultural experiences and even take part in public services through the immersive virtual reality portal. Its first Metaverse City event will take place on New Year’s Eve, when the traditional Bosingak bell-ringing ceremony will occur simultaneously in both the physical and virtual world. The metaverse city is part of Mayor Oh Se-hoon’s 10 year plan to improve Seoul’s social mobility and global competitiveness, and aligns with South Korea’s Digital New Deal.

Some Chinese superapps are opening up their platforms for interoperability—a key element of the metaverse, outlined in our report, Into the Metaverse—across platforms as the metaverse expands in the country. As of November, Tencent will allow its WeChat users to link to external shopping sites in their messages. These links include those of competitors, such as Alibaba’s Tmall and Taobao, tearing down long-standing walls between some of China’s most popular social media platforms.

Significantly more Chinese consumers—56%—are familiar with the term metaverse as compared to consumers in the UK—31%—and US—26%.

Wunderman Thompson Data

WEB ZEPETO3
Zepeto

Business in Asian Pacific regions is leaning into growing societal interest in the metaverse, taking advantage of the opportunities it poses for communities and betting on its success through major investments. These virtual advancements will come to fruition in the coming months as the metaverse continues to develop in APAC.

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