Either it will be the best thing the crypto world will ever experience or a farce in the name of the best thing the world will ever experience. That’s pretty much the discussion around virtual reality (VR), a technology which allows humans beings to experience an immersive illusion of being somewhere else. Many Hollywood blockbusters, including The Matrix, and the very recent Ready Player One, attempted to illustrate how the next generations of VR technology could be. In these movies, protagonists were living inside a world created by stunning – and almost paranormal – objects. They had a job (even if it was about kidnapping a key maker), expensive Ferraris, and even a bae to hang out with.
Away from the sci-fi, engineers meanwhile are exploring real-time use cases based on the VR. The technology is promised to gamers, with the influx on highly-handed games launched by the Play Station and the Xbox. Apart from that, the possibilities of removing the middle layer of keyboards and emails and using avatars to pass down information at workplaces are also being explored.
It could be a reason why Brian Armstrong, co-founder of one of the largest crypto exchanges Coinbase, believes that VR could become a tool to expand virtual payment technologies. They could allow participants to earn virtual money which they can take back to the real world and spend them like any other fiat money.
“The reason is simple,” explains Armstrong. “When people transact in virtual worlds, it doesn’t make sense to use the currency of one country. People from all over the world will gather in these virtual spaces, and it would be exclusionary (or perhaps even rude) to use one country’s currency in a digital world. Furthermore, digital currency will create an incentive for people to spend more time in these worlds (where they can earn “real money”) creating a virtuous cycle for companies building these worlds.”
Bitcoin in a VR World
Armstrong referred to the copper coins from the movie Ready Player One. These coins were a form of treasure or reward a character would receive within the OASIS, a virtual reality world. Players used a bag of holdings to store these coins.
Developers of such virtual worlds could create their centralized digital currency or use an existing decentralized currency like Bitcoin or Ethereum, Armstrong suggested. He also envisioned how people would start spending more time in the VR world to earn a passive income, especially when it’s going to be usable in the real world.
“Customers of these products can take the money they generate in the virtual world, and convert it to traditional money to pay their bills in real life. This will help take virtual reality from a hobby or entertainment to a full time job or lifestyle,” Armstrong explained.
While the theory itself seems like a sci-fi, it is still very interesting from the technological point of view. Who knows, nobody would need to go to the office anymore as they wear a headset and control every random task via an avatar.