Those of us praying for the survival of virtual reality anticipate various tipping points: when people start genuinely socializing in virtual reality swo much that those without headsets see their popularity suffer; when a “must-see” big budget movie or TV show appears only in an immersive world; and when virtual reality becomes essential for business.
We’ve been reporting on the first of these possibilities for some time now, and more to come on the second.
Doing Business in VR
Happily, the “business in VR” tipping point has gotten a little closer this week, with the announcement by law firm ArentFox Schiff that it has become the first major law firm to open an office in virtual reality.
I’m not ready to accept the term “Metaverse” and cede the virtual reality universe to Mark Zuckerberg. Really, he’s not a well-liked fellow. Associating him too closely in the public mind with a phenomenon that I love will all-but doom it forever! So we will it VR, not “the Metaverse.”
ArentFox Schiff’s new office contains four floors and conference rooms, plus a private meeting space. It was designed by Voxel Architects, a digital architecture studio that specializes in “virtual structures and experiences.”
On the firm’s website, ArentFox Schiff Chairman Anthony V. Lupo says that virtual reality “stands to disrupt nearly every industry – fashion, sports, real estate, the list goes on – presenting immense possibilities and potential risks. ArentFox Schiff has been helping world-class brands in these sectors enter the Metaverse, and now with our new office in Decentraland, we can call each other virtual neighbors.”
“Decentralized,” where users can buy and sell real estate, is described by its creators as “the first fully decentralized virtual world.”
This is more than a forum for “Zoom”-type screen meetings, but instead a fully-immersive environment in which clients may visit a realistic office that feels as though they are really there. With luck, in the future, many meetings will be held in these kinds of virtual spaces, VR will become essential for business, and this will all help to create a world of which many of us have dreamed for decades.