Crypto Pirates

The creator, who collaborated with Beyonce, aspires to create a’metaverse that your grandma can understand.’

January 15, 2022

Consider a personalised online environment in which a user's Instagram images are shown in a museum collection and their favourite songs are played in a virtual club open to the public. Then consider the possibility of selling items inspired by your personalised universe.

That is the goal of a new firm called Auggy: to allow everyone to establish their own metaverse.

"We're attempting to develop a Metaverse that your grandmother can comprehend," Sidney Swift, founder and creator of Auggy, told Yahoo Finance in an interview.

According to the music producer turned technology guru, each person already has their own digital world that spans multiple platforms on the Internet. He is enabling anyone to construct their own Metaverse by consolidating their online presence, dragging and dropping all their Instagram photos, preferred Spotify songs, and Youtube videos into one location, thereby establishing their own digital universe.

"It's hyper-focused on their own identity and then enables them to monetise that digital identity," Swift explained. 

Swift is pitching Auggy to appeal to both newcomers and seasoned cryptocurrency users. Users are not required to have a crypto wallet. And as more individuals gain familiarity with crypto, Auggy will assist them in ascending to higher realms of the metaverse.

Platform users possess their own metaverse in the form of a non-fungible token (NFT), which they may buy and sell. Users can export their Metaverse to Facebook, build digital games on the platform, and licence them to PlayStation or even to Pixar.

According to the designer, NFTs will explode in popularity by 2022 – and their applications in music are only getting started.

"We haven't even scratched the surface of how an NFT can be used to promote not only a song, but also lyrics, melody, behind-the-scenes film, and an artist's entire album and brand," he explained.

Swift anticipates including fans in the songwriting process by launching an NFT campaign with an artist in which fans can purchase 10,000 NFTs and then vote on the artist's songwriting and production.

"We're going to see a significant increase in the number of people who own equity in music," Swift predicts. "By 2027, I believe that 90% of individuals will have crypto wallets and NFTs."

Swift — a music producer who previously collaborated with Beyonce and Nicki Minaj, among others — came up with the idea for a personalised metaverse in 2017, while experimenting with ways to increase artist connection with fans.

"I noticed a lot of wasted chances for fan conversion in the music industry, especially as Spotify and streaming became more of a passive audience experience than an engaged audience experience," Swift told Yahoo Finance.

He invented and patented a method for a music video to trigger a mobile game, allowing the user to interact with the song-turned-game. Bad guys may fly into the player's room and be shot down via augmented reality, he explained.

"We discovered that secondary experiences generated five times the quantity of streams and that people continued to play the game," he explained. "This enabled us to pursue a revenue model that was quite distinct from that of traditional media."

Auggy is now an invite-only site as it conducts beta testing with musicians such as Lil' Dicky, influencers, and companies such as Herschel bags over the next few months. However, it intends to eventually offer it up to anyone who want to sign up for free.

Auggy intends to charge a tiny fee on all NFTs made with the help of its metaverse creator. Users have the ability to determine their own royalty rates for their metaverses, games, and experiences.

Swift stated that a few eateries are already utilising Auggy, giving augmented reality menus and NFT membership. On Auggy, artists are tying games to their songs and offering NFTs that are only accessible while watching their video or listening to their music in their metaverse.

"We're giving artists the opportunity to create a highly curated customised experience for folks who are at the peak of their attention span," Swift explained. In this sense, the metaverse enables artists to sell themselves and monetise their work in whole new ways.

"By identifying the audience and then guiding them through a succession of campaigns, we can provide them with the experiences they desire and encourage them to purchase the artist's songs," he added.

Finally, Swift outlined the following scenario for the metaverse's future development: At its most basic level, a television commercial might be playing and your phone would know which commercials you are watching. The commercial's producer may then send a discount code to your phone, which you could use to purchase things at that retailer.

Swift sees being able to enter a company's Metaverse and purchase products while trying on digital clothing or taking virtual tours of various spots in Paris using that discount code.

"You can then incorporate all of the opportunistic, digital experiences that I believe a lot of businesses are missing out on because they lack the infrastructure of a technology company to facilitate all of that bandwidth," he explained to Yahoo Finance.

Swift envisions users being able to sell their own products and make secondary sales by promoting their favourite items. "It's a means of monetizing and creating an experience for everybody who interacts with you and your own brand on the internet," he continued. "Everyone should have their own metaverse and the ability to commercialise it."

Swift, though, does not envision Auggy competing with Facebook's much-anticipated metaverse. He believes that numerous metaverses will exist and that all information will be decentralised.

Swift is sceptical that Facebook will seek a centralised metaverse and amass massive amounts of data, which might spark public outcry. He recommended that the company could focus on being a hardware company that provides the experience of augmented reality glasses and positioning itself as the go-to shop for purchasing the hardware required to operate in the metaverse.

Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, is investing extensively in the metaverse and intends to recruit 1 billion people within the next 10 years by luring users away from the company's existing Facebook environment, which he hopes to harness for digital commerce.


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