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MTN to host Africa’s first virtual concert in the metaverse

MTN Group has announced that the network will host an Africa-first virtual concert in Ubuntuland, Africa’s metaverse.

According to MTN, in February, it became the first African company to purchase land in Ubuntuland with a vision to create dedicated environments for creating unique immersive experiences for its customers.

Bernice Samuels, Executive: Group Marketing at MTN Group, said, “The MTN Group’s presence in the African metaverse will be known as altMTN. altMTN allows us to further support our ambition to lead digital platforms and support African innovation, and will, over time feature live events, shopping, gaming and learning.”

“To welcome everyone to altMTN we will leverage our partnership with The Mic: Africa, to host Africa’s first virtual music concert in the metaverse to drive awareness and adoption of this new space”.

MTN references research from Analysis Group which estimates that the Metaverse could contribute US$40-billion to Sub-Saharan Africa’s GDP by 2031.

The operator believes the Metaverse will provide African brands with significant opportunities to tell unique stories in engaging ways.

“Many people still see the virtual worlds and environments as confusing and inaccessible, and so we are very proud to bring the altMTN experience to market in a way that can be accessed via mobile, tablet, PC or VR handset” Samuels said.

“For our launch event, we will be running a competition with our customers, giving them a chance to win exclusive tickets to the concert. We believe that by tapping into a key passion on the continent, namely music, we can actively draw our customers into the environment to not only experience it first-hand, but also to help us to improve altMTN as this developing technology increasingly interconnects and matures, to unlock the full benefits for our customers.”

“The metaverse holds a wide array of opportunities to further enhance and showcase African innovation and are excited to be pioneers of this journey on the continent,” concluded Samuels.

Shaping 2022

In January this year, ITWeb reported that market research suggests the metaverse is expected to shape this year.

The publication quoted data and analytics company GlobalData’s “Tech, Media & Telecom Predictions: 2022” report, which identifies the top 30 themes impacting the tech, media and telecoms (TMT) industry.

ITWeb Africa also reported that in terms of Africa’s opportunity to explore and leverage any tech benefits of the metaverse, attempts to control or regulate social media merely create distance between the continent and the metaverse.

Arthur Goldstuck, market analyst and CEO of World Wide Worx, has previously commented on the situation and said: “The meta-hyped version of the metaverse is as far from the African continent as low-cost, high-res VR headsets and affordable fibre cables or reliable 5G everywhere. In other words, it will arrive slowly over much of this decade, rather than the big bang that media hype suggests. However, the browser-based iterations of the metaverse will become increasingly used as platforms for entertainment and the arts, ranging from digital artworks to music and movies.”

Goldstuck told ITWeb that some respondents to the SA Social Media Landscape 2022 study would equate in-game environments, like Fortnite and Mimecast, as virtual worlds.

“In other words, these are not necessarily people actively entering a virtual world, but the experience of participating in an interactive, immersive environment gives them a greater propensity to enter metaverse alternatives like Second Life, Decentraland and Ubuntuland,” he said.

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