If you've spent any time on the internet, you've probably encountered both the metaverse and the multiverse. But what is the difference between them? And what do they each mean for your future? To help clear things up, we'll go over how these terms are used in relation to virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and mixed reality (MR).
What Is a Metaverse?
A metaverse is a virtual world. It's a computer-based space where users can interact with other people and explore, in real time and from any location. Metaverses are often called "virtual realities" or "digital spaces," but they can also be web-based worlds that use your web browser as an interface (as opposed to standalone experiences).
In short: a "metaverse" is essentially just another word for an online space where people interact with each other through avatars and build imaginary universes together.
What Is a Multiverse?
According to a theoretical idea, multiple parallel universes coexist with our own.
This is not the same thing as saying that there are multiple universes, though it can be used to describe such a scenario. In fact, it's more accurate to say that "multiverse" is something of an umbrella term for many different theories regarding other universes—some of which may or may not exist!
It's also possible that we are a part of a single universe and are unaware of its size, given that humans have only so far explored less than 5% of our own galaxy, the Milky Way. So maybe there's no way for us to tell if our neighborhood resembles the parallel universes in all those science fiction films? But if you really need evidence, see
The First-Ever Evidence of the Multiverse, by Wendorf, M.
Stephen Hawking clarified,
“We are not down to a single, unique universe, but our findings imply a significant reduction of the multiverse to a much smaller range of possible universes."
Metaverse vs. Multiverse: How Are They Different?
The "metaverse" is a term used to refer to a virtual reality. A multiverse, on the other hand, is a collection of all possible realities.
You can interact with people who are also present in the metaverse and use the Internet there. On the other hand, the multiverse is made up of numerous universes that each exist in their own space and time and are totally independent of one another and from Earth.
The metaverse is similar to Second Life or World of Warcraft: it's an online world created specifically for entertainment purposes, where users can create avatars (or digital representations) and interact with one another through these avatars. On the other hand, there's no single entity controlling the content in each universe; rather than having one company make all decisions about what happens in an MMO game or virtual world like Second Life does now (which causes problems because companies don't always know how consumers want their products made), everyone would be able to contribute their own ideas independently without having them edited by someone else first!
The metaverse is your virtual reality, and the multiverse is all realities.
The metaverse is a virtual world that only exists within the confines of a computer, whereas the multiverse is made up of all imaginable realities.
In other words, the metaverse is your VR headset and what you see when you put it on; it's the game world in which you live while playing a video game or exploring an online universe. The multiverse is everything outside this game world—you can think of it as being like our real-life space and time, in which we exist as humans, but it also includes parallel universes where people don't look like us or have some other trait that's different from ours.
So why should we care about these differences? Because knowing them will help us understand how both concepts relate to each other and how they might affect our lives in the coming years.
The multiverse is the collection of all possible universes that exist outside our own, while the metaverse is what we call the collection of all virtual worlds that exist within them. It’s important to note that these two concepts are not the same thing—although they both exist in science fiction stories and movies, they're actually different things.