UpOnly | Research #39 — Play-to-earn projects receive cash injections
Industry-leading tech giant Apple has finally landed in the Metaverse. Following market pioneers Meta and rival tech company Microsoft, Apple announced a new next-gen product strongly correlated to Metaverse development. The announcement was followed up by posting job vacancies providing insight into the company’s plans in the sector.
Meanwhile, investment has been flowing into the Web3 games that will likely feature in these companies’ Metaverse environments. A 100 million dollar funding round has recently closed, which may provide important trickle-down benefits for small to medium-sized GameFi developers. In this Edition of UpOnly | Research, we review all the latest news in tech development and investment within the GameFi and Metaverse markets.
Apple’s development shifts toward Metaverse
Apple made its intentions known two weeks ago by posting job listings in search of VR and AR experts. One posting specifically called for engineers capable of “building tools and frameworks to enable connected experiences in a 3D mixed-reality world.”
The job posts strongly suggest that Apple is developing a virtual environment similar to the Metaverse. However, don’t expect them to embrace that term. Apple marketing chief, Greg Joswiak, said at a recent event that Metaverse is “a word I’ll never use’’.
And he’s not the only one. The Metaverse was a concept that Apple CEO Tim Cook was always apprehensive of, stating that its ambiguity could mislead consumers. “I’m really not sure the average person can tell you what the Metaverse is.” he said.
Despite their grievances with the term, AR headsets and mixed reality certainly fall under Metaverse technology. Apple’s inclusion in the market will no doubt drastically affect the industry’s future trajectory. Prospective employees will join the Technology Development Group, the virtual reality wing of Apple.
The job listings follow the announcement by Apple that an AR headset will likely debut on the market in 2023. Filing trademarks for “Reality Pro” and “Reality One” early this year, Apple’s next-gen kit will cost somewhere between $2,000 — $3,000.
The device will feature more than 10 cameras with the highest resolution displays in a commercially distributed headset. It will run a new operating system, and the team has christened the device realityOS, which will include AR versions of Messages, FaceTime, and Maps. The listings imply that Apple is looking to build 3D content for the headset, justifying the company’s 2020 acquisition of NextVR.
After the layoff of 11,000 Meta employees, Apple will have no shortage of applicants, likely cherry-picking from a pool of talented tech workers with years of experience. The move is important. Apple is the market leader in Big Tech and will undoubtedly bring great innovation, ample investment, and healthy competition to the Metaverse market.
Big opportunities for small GameFi developers
The Metaverse isn’t the only Web3 industry getting a financial boost. GameFi received its largest investment in Q4 2022 last week after UAE-based Web3 game distributor Fenix Games successfully closed a $150 million funding round. The money will go towards purchasing, investing, and deploying new and existing games on the blockchain.
As more quality developers embrace blockchain technology, Fenix Games has seen an opportunity to play the role of publisher, which will involve aiding developers with game design, go-to-market, and operations. Chris Ko, CEO and co-founder of Fenix Games envisions their platform as a VC fund for fueling gaming frontierism.
Whereas traditional games have spent years establishing distribution platforms and markets that unite billions of people, Web3 is only now building the infrastructure, tools, and support to facilitate widespread adoption. Fenix Games will attempt to create a market for Web3 games ahead of launch, helping build communities around them.
Fenix Games is looking ahead of the curve with many games in its portfolio. However, they are not the first to do this. Play-to-earn ecosystem Nakamoto Games has run a successful platform similar to this model for the past year. Players have a vast selection of games to choose from spanning all genres, and developers can host games on their site for a small percentage of profits.
The ambitious project Fenix Games has set out on has proven successful and will undoubtedly prove beneficial for GameFI. Their objective indicates a maturing industry heading for consolidation, where large firms buy out or provide seed money to younger firms to create a more stable market.
In other market-related news, Bora Network and Widus Partners launched a $30 million fund to invest in blockchain games, the Metaverse, and NFTs. This comes following an agreement with Polygon blockchain in August to build a Web3 hub and expand its ecosystem.
Additionally, Portuguese startup RealFevr raised 10 million to enhance their GameFi Sports platform. The investment round was led by global sports investor ADvantage, with the goal of international expansion by acquiring more sports-related intellectual property.
RealFevr has already launched its NFT marketplace and closed partnerships with soccer leagues and teams worldwide. They recently surpassed the 1 million mark in total smart-contract transactions on the BNB Chain.
Signs of maturing markets
It appears that the talk is over when it comes to blockchain technology. All visions and plans for the burgeoning industry are now being put into place by the biggest tech companies in the world. Apple’s entry will no doubt aid the transition of the market into a mature and stable phase of development and solidifies it as a considerable part of the future of Big Tech.
As for GameFi, It’s no doubt that ecosystems like Fenix Games and Nakamoto Games will provide platforms for Web3 developers to build and grow their games and communities. Buy-outs will help save promising projects which lack investment to build by putting them into the hands of great minds with ample funding. Similarly, providing seed money in challenging market conditions may help projects with great potential remain buoyant during the crypto winter.
Bringing various GameFi projects together under one digital roof helps projects assist, partner, and learn from each other. Blockchain games have seen volatile situations when standing alone, uniting them as one may be the path forward in the growing market.
UpOnly unites Web3
UpOnly has made a platform with the primary objective of uniting Web3 projects under one roof and showcasing them to a large blockchain-savvy audience. UpOnly acts as the showroom where ambitious next-gen developers display their projects to forward-thinking gamers in a bid to grow the play-to-earn, move-to-earn, and Metaverse industry. Additionally, developers can build their communities by hosting events and tournaments on-site and participating in co-marketing campaigns. Play-to-earn gamers and Metaverse enthusiasts can browse listings and access essential information about project themes, token prices, market movements, and much more.
UpOnly’s week in review
- UpOnly lines up staking and blog service upgrades
- UpOnly steps up write-to-earn platform among ongoing developments
UpOnly has positioned itself as a one-stop shop for play-to-earn, move-to-earn, and Metaverse projects. Its sophisticated data and analytics platform provides both gamers and investors with insightful and actionable statistics on GameFi and Metaverse projects. Through computer-generated insights, UpOnly helps users identify the profitable opportunities each market and project has to offer. Alongside the data directory, UpOnly has launched a decentralized prediction platform to facilitate betting on play-to-earn tournaments, assisting with organizing and promoting alongside their partners.