Metaverse and unified communications

6 September 2022

Metaverse, a concept under construction

What we call today the Metaverse (or, rather, metaverses) is a bunch of independent virtual platforms, where users can interact as avatars, as well as make purchases, consume content, generate information, etc. It is still a debatable concept, although it has received the support of different market players, such as Facebook. They are still similar to Second Life where around 2010 it had some relevance, but adapted to the capabilities of new devices and networks and the use of new industry standards.

It is difficult to assess the disruptive nature, since a good part of the technologies that it supports already existed a long time ago, so it is rather a natural evolution. Voice recognition systems, 3D representation, virtual or augmented reality already existed for more than 10 years and others such as hololens glasses for more than five years.

Unified Communications and Metaverse

It is not easy to know what Metaverse is going to bring to the world of real-time communications. Perhaps it contributes in aspects such as UCaaS, where it lacks components that facilitate the cohesion of professional teams: such as the sense of presence and a place that encourages relaxed and informal communications among the employees.

Since remote work is here to stay, UCaaS must provide dedicated spaces for team building and reduce some of the current problems, such as fatigue or anxiety caused by excessive meetings in work environments. It is possible that the metaverse can help in that regard.

Another factor to take into account is that the metaverse can be quite intensive when it comes to demanding hardware and bandwidth requirements, which could widen the gap between those who can access them and those who cannot, more so when considering access scenarios from the home through internet access lines with a residential profile.

Quobis communication platform as a gateway to the metaverse

Quobis has a unified communications platform that is already used by business and more general customer profiles through telecommunications operators.

In a way, the technologies behind the metaverse, such as artificial intelligence, augmented reality, bots, webGL, etc. They have already been technologies present in the market in recent years and in which Quobis has participated in some way, even if it was before its standardization process. These proofs of concept or innovation projects have made it possible to analyze what the adaptation needs are so that it can be used to create specific metaverses or that it be a gateway to these metaverses.

WebRTC is a technology ahead of the metaverse but could be part of the set of technologies considered to enable it. WebRTC is natively implemented in the main browsers and supported in all types of devices, allowing access to the media (microphone, camera, screen, etc.), the establishment of multimedia sessions (videoconference, etc.) without having to install nothing on the device.

This flexibility is ideal so that it can also be used as a gateway to the metaverse, to avoid having to install heavy applications on the device (as is now the case with video games that expose virtual realities that we could consider metaverses).

Integration with the PSTN or switched telephone network  is one of the main points where Quobis can play a role, since it is part of Quobis’ DNA. Through the WebRTC to SIP gateway and the different ways of managing this interconnection, it is possible to make calls from the WebRTC environment and even delegate their registration to conventional telephone systems.

In this way, it is avoided to create an independent island of a metaverse from the rest of the communication systems. Adapting the platform as a gateway to the metaverse while maintaining interconnection with other communications platforms is a point of interest.

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