Technology In South Korea, a three million euro plan for the metaverse in Seoul

In South Korea, a three million euro plan for the metaverse in Seoul

In South Korea, a word intrigued lately, that of metaverse. Facebook popularized the term by changing its business name to Meta, but these virtual realities already exist and South Korea seems to want to take the lead in the field.

The South Korean authorities want to speed up the use of these virtual realities. They want to create a favorable economic environment. As early as November 2021, the government launched a “the alliance for the metaverse”, a consortium of 17 conglomerates, with the participation of the giant Samsung, to promote the development of this technology.

But they are already present here on a daily basis. For apartment searches, the Zigbang application already allows virtual reality tours. There is also the Zepeto platform, a social network, where you exchange with your friends through avatars. Very popular, the application produced by the South Korean group Naver has more than 150 million users.

Seoul City Hall also wants to have its own metaverse. The digital platform will be launched at the beginning of January 2022. The traditional sound of the bells of the belfry of Bosingak, symbol of the new year for the inhabitants of the capital will also resonate the metaverse of the city for those who wish it. The first step in an ambitious program. “Our program is at different levels. First of all, one of the objectives is to allow citizens to be able to appreciate all municipal services in augmented reality. For example, instead of traveling for administrative procedures, it will be possible to exchange with the avatar of an official of the town hall. But also, for the youngest who are comfortable with this technology, to be able to follow online courses on various subjects thanks to the metaverse “, explains Gang Jihyun, director of the smart city section of the municipality.

The South Korean capital has bet nearly three million euros on its platform from which it will be possible from 2023 to file a complaint in virtual reality. In order to target a large audience in a country where 95% of the population is connected to the internet, this metaverse will be accessible directly from a mobile phone. “It must be extremely easy to use so that as many people as possible can access it”, recount Gang Jihyun.

“We want to design a metaverse that can be used without a virtual reality headset, without any additional tools.”

Gang Jihyun, Director of Seoul Municipality Smart City Section

In 2026, the Seoul Metaverse is supposed to be able to allow citizens to chat with the mayor, visit iconic places in the city, attend virtual ceremonies and officials to work only through this platform. To see if this virtual world is intended to replace or supplement the interactions between public authorities and the ten million inhabitants of the metropolis.

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