Citi Group released a new Global Perspective & Solutions (Citi GPS) report titled “Metaverse and Money: Decrypting the Future” on Thursday. The leading global bank has approximately 200 million customer accounts and does business in more than 160 countries and jurisdictions.
The 184-page report explores various aspects of the metaverse in depth. They cover what is the metaverse; its infrastructure; digital assets including NFTs in the metaverse; money and defi in metaverse; and the development rules that apply to the metaverse.
On the scale of the metaverse economy, Citi Group describes it: “We believe the metaverse economy can be the next generation of the internet – combining the physical and digital worlds in a durable and immersive way – and not quite a virtual reality world.”
Noting that “A device-agnostic metaverse accessible through PCs, game consoles, and smartphones could lead to a huge ecosystem,” Citi Group writes:
Additionally, the report explains that Citi Group believes the total number of metaverse users could be around 5 billion.
Report co-author Ronit Ghose, global director of Banking, Fintech & Digital Assets, Citi Global Insights, explains:
“Experts contributing to the report point to a range of users up to 5 billion, depending on whether we use the broad definition (mobile user base) or just a billion based on the narrow definition ”(VR/AR device user base) – we applied before.”
The report also discusses how users access the metaverse. The authors write: “Consumer hardware manufacturers will be the portal for potential and supermarket janitors. Similar to today, there will likely be a split between the US/international and China/firewall-based metaverse, next to the spectrum based on technology and business models, i.e. hyper-centralization versus decentralization.”
Furthermore, the report details that “The metaverse of the future will include more native digital tokens but traditional forms of money will also be embedded”
“Money in the metaverse can exist in different forms, i.e. in-game tokens, stablecoins, central bank digital currencies (CBDCs) and cryptocurrencies.”
“Additionally, digital assets and NFTs, in the metaverse, will allow for sovereign ownership to users/owners and are tradable, composable, immutable, and mostly interoperable.” Citi’s report noted.