In the last few years, Indian technology companies have made rapid progress with the valuation of more than 50 companies reaching above 1 billion dollars (unicorns). In the consumer-facing technologies (like Paytm, Byju’s) as well as in business-to-business technologies (Zoho Corporation, Freshworks), the Indian engineers have proved their mettle by coming up with world-class products.
A new area where many Indian companies are trying to make an entry is metaverse (beyond the existing universe). Metaverse is a combination of augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), mixed reality (MR). Through metaverse technology, the individuals would be able to enter simultaneously in an alternative universe of the Internet and perform daily tasks. For those who have watched The Matrix, it is like the two realities experienced by Neo, the lead character.
In the last few months, many big players including the CEO of Facebook Inc., Mark Zuckerberg talked about it. “I wanted to discuss this now so that you can see the future we’re working toward and how our major initiatives across the company are going to map that,” said Zukerberg.
Facebook Inc., is developing products with which users would be able to enter in Metaverse using Laptop, PC, or mobile phones and do daily activities like talking to friends, going to work, dance, party and so on in a virtual world.
Metaverse, Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) – a unique and non-interchangeable unit of data – and cryptocurrency, the technological base behind all the promising use cases is blockchain. India is already making a big leap in blockchain technology. The country already has two unicorns – CoinDCX and CoinSwitch – that use blockchain technology to come up with successful products.
India’s crypto market registered a growth of more than 600 percent in the last year. Apart from the aforementioned unicorns, many other companies like WazirX, Zebpay, Unocoin are the companies that have made their mark in the cryptoworld.
“Large institutional-sized transfers above $10 million worth of cryptocurrency represent 42% of transactions sent from India-based addresses, versus 28% for Pakistan and 29% for Vietnam,” says a report by Chainanalysis, a New York-based blockchain data platform. “Those numbers suggest that India’s cryptocurrency investors are part of larger, more sophisticated organisations.”
Apart from the startups, established tech players like Reliance Jio are also making huge bets on augmented reality, mixed reality, and overall blockchain technology. Reliance Jio made its entry into the mixed reality market with the launch of Jio Glass.
“Jio Glass comes with a convenient cable that you can attach to your phone and thus connect to the internet. It is at cutting edge of the technology that provides best in class mixed reality service,” Reliance Jio Infocomm President Kiran M Thomas said at RIL annual general meeting (AGM).
In the first major public use case of blockchain technology in India, the CBSE decided to use it to keep the class 10th and 12th results safe and tamper-proof. Speaking to news agency ANI, CBSE Director of Information and Technology Antriksh Johri said on September 26: “Blockchain implementation has been done by CBSE. Earlier we introduced Artificial intelligence (AI) and Machine learning (ML) for affiliation systems. Here, the data is linked and stored with cryptographic security so that it is immutable and traceable.”
Recently the Ministry of Electronics and IT released a plan to take the productivity of the technology sector to 1 trillion dollars in order to achieve the 5 trillion dollars economy goal.
As a part of the 1,000-day plan to transform India’s IT sector, India looks to make a few changes, and improvements and that includes developing high-tech areas such as AI, Cyber Security, Super Computing, Semiconductors, Blockchain, and Quantum Computing and promoting skill development.
The private investment in the metaverse, NFT, cryptocurrency use cases in India is expected to rise exponentially in the next few years because China is cracking down on many of these technologies and foreign investors are looking for avenues to park their money. So, India has a very bright future when it comes to use cases of blockchain technology.