NextPlay Launches NextPlay X Soma Labs, an Innovation and Design Lab for Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs), Social Games, and Metaverse Worlds
NextPlay Technologies, Inc., a digital business ecosystem for digital advertisers, consumers, video gamers and travelers, has teamed with Soma Innovation Lab and NFT Pro to launch NextPlay X Soma Labs, a digital design and innovation lab focused on developing non-fungible tokens (NFTs), social games and Metaverse virtual worlds for major brands, creators and agencies.
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The joint venture will leverage Soma’s extended reality solutions, NFT Pro’s non-fungible tokens technology platform and NextPlay’s proprietary in-game advertising, game development, crypto-banking, Connected TV, travel booking engine and other NextPlay digital technologies to build foundational pathways to the Metaverse. This includes travel destinations, game worlds, museums, shopping centers, stores, social clubs and more—all experienced in the Metaverse.
Heralded as the next evolution of the Internet, the Metaverse is an immersive online virtual world which incorporates augmented reality, virtual reality, 3D holographic avatars, interactive video and other means of digital communication and interaction. The Metaverse is a hyper-real alternative world that you can coexist in through a computer or television screen, or by using special glasses or goggles for a more immersive experience.
As a demonstration of this interconnected ecosystem, in a matter of a few weeks, the company expects to launch Issue by Travel Magazine (“Issue”), an adventure travel portal that will offer inviting onramps into the Metaverse. As an extension of NextPlay’s existing Travel Magazine, Issue will feature immersive content, XR showrooms, mini games, NFT offerings and more—all created by NextPlay X Soma Labs.
NextPlay’s technical teams will lead the lab’s development effort, including conceptualization, character development, and asset design, as well as the creation of marketplaces that offer NFT smart contracts.
Soma brings to the joint effort expertise in the production of virtual reality, augmented reality, and mixed reality media, as well as the creation of film, gaming, television, and music video content for global brands and advertising agencies worldwide.
In addition to creating metaverse spaces, the lab will provide end-to-end solutions for brands and advertisers to launch their own branded, fully customizable NFTs-powered experiences and marketplaces directly on their website.
NFT Pro will support the lab’s NFT digital asset offerings. NFTs can represent real-world objects like art, music, in-game items and videos, and are usually encoded with the same underlying technology as cryptocurrencies.
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“NextPlay X Soma Labs will help shape and grow the fast-evolving world of digital goods and tokens, and the emerging Metaverse,” commented Soma Innovation Lab’s CMO, Karen Morgan. “The importance of brands, creators and agencies to enter this space with elevated urgency was recently highlighted with the renaming of Facebook to Meta and it stated new focus on the vast emerging opportunities for global consumer engagement and monetization presented by the Metaverse.
“We believe we are at just the beginning of a digital renaissance in the worlds of art and content creation,” continued Morgan. “We now have a unique opportunity to build a flourishing ecosystem of brands, artists, collectors and curators who will help us build meta communities at the intersection of culture and commerce.”
According to NextPlay co-CEO, Bill Kerby: “The Metaverse is emerging as the next wave of consumer engagement beyond the Internet as we know it. It will enable people to build, buy, sell, perform, collaborate, and play together in real time like never before. Our new digital innovation and design lab is positioning to be at the forefront in developing Metaverse spaces and multi-touchpoint opportunities for advertisers and brands.
“NextPlay X Soma Labs will live at the center of our digital ecosystem of gaming, crypto-banking, fintech, Connected TV, travel and tourism, and entertainment,” added Kerby. “We see it interconnecting these powerful segments of our business with a goal to drive new high-margin revenue streams.”
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