Seoul pilots immersive metaverse platform

The Seoul Metropolitan Government (SMG) is working with Seoul Institute of Technology (SIT) to launch a pilot version of its immersive metaverse service via SIT’s website.

SIT is conducting prototype analysis to build Metaverse Seoul and said it will explore “pre-emptive responses” to the metaverse’s potential issues and future policy directions. It is enlisting the help of Seoul-based technology company 3D Factory.

Virtual venue

Seoul will open virtual Seoul City Square and indoor event venues during the pilot programme. The project will further expand to key events, forums, and educational programmes run by the city government.

Users connected to the metaverse can create their avatars and enter the virtual square. Real-time information about the temperature, weather, and air of the capital is available on the platform. The platform’s real-time sync feature allows users to see the virtual place change according to the season and time. When the platform officially opens to the public, cherry blossoms at the virtual Seoul City Square will be in full bloom.

Passing through the underground walkway across the square, users can reach the underground area of the SIT, where remote meetings, conferences, and press briefings will be held. The area is equipped with a virtual chat system that enables virtual conferences, meetings, and events.

Presenters can share their screens and live-stream external links. In addition, the area can hold numerous events simultaneously. Text chat and translation services based on voice chat will be provided for foreign users. Extra virtual research spaces of the platform will be utilised for forums and debates.

The platform also features a testbed created for metaverse content and includes facilities such as press rooms and photo walls. It will also be used for other events, including Seoul Beauty Week when citizens can engage in virtual activities and participate in the events remotely. Seoul will also work on providing unique cultural experiences through metaverse.

For example, it will recreate the historic Yukjo-geori (Street of Six Ministries) of the Joseon dynasty. Furthermore, the SMG will keep developing non-fungible token (NFT) and virtual payment technologies so that individual creators’ works can be linked to the metaverse and make a virtuous cycle.