Seoul officially launched its metaverse platform

The Korean capital Seoul has officially launched its metaverse platform dubbed Metaverse Seoul, where users will experience an immersive public service. In this virtual environment, users could fill out official paperwork, get help with taxes, and use other city services created for businesses, education and tourism. The platform will also include a virtual city hall, well-known touristic locations and a counselling service for adolescents and teens that offers mentoring and education.

The virtual platform will be developed over several phases, with official figures indicating that about $1.6 million has been invested and that the project’s second phase will cost about $2.2 million.

According to Seoul’s administration, the goal is to create a platform that would eventually manage all of the city’s administrative functions.

ITU-T launches focus group on metaverse

A Focus Group on Metaverse was established at the International Telecommunication Union’s Telecommunication Standardization Sector (ITU-T) with the goal of supporting pre-standardisation activities for the metaverse.

Aspects to be considered as part of the group’s work include, among others: working definitions and terminology, concepts, vision, use cases, and ecosystem; technical requirements; technical frameworks and characteristics, including identification of fundamental underlying technologies; aspects related to security and the protection of personally identifiable information; networking infrastructure and connectivity; and interoperability.

The focus group is expected to carry out activities such as:

  • Study terminology and concepts.
  • Identify and study enabling technologies and key tasks for standardisation purposes.
  • Study and gather information to develop a pre-standardisation roadmap.
  • Build a community of experts to unify concepts and develop common understandings.
  • Identify stakeholders with whom ITU-T could collaborate.
  • Establish liaisons and relationships with other organisations that could contribute to pre-standardisation activities.

Breakthrough in haptic technologies will provide a greater sense of touch in metaverse-like environments

Researchers from the City University of Hong Kong have announced a breakthrough in haptic technologies. To provide a more genuine sense of  ‘touch’ experience in the extended realities, the team has developed a more advanced haptic wireless glove dubbed WeTac.

Unlike the existing haptic gloves that are bulky and reliant on wires and cables, limiting users’ ability to fully immerse themselves in the metaverse, the WeTa glove overcomes these limitations by providing an ultrathin, skin-integrated wireless solution.