If there is one company that can claim some paternity of the metaverse, it is Niantic who has developed augmented reality games like the pioneer Ingress, and of course the Pokémon Go cardboard. The studio received $ 300 million. to amplify the development of its virtual universe.
If Facebook has communicated a lot about its intention to create a metaverse, the social network is not the first in this niche. Far from there ! It is possible to go back to Niantic, a subsidiary of Google which gained its independence in 2015. But its first feat of arms was Ingress, an augmented reality game released in 2012 and which is in a way the ancestor of Pokémon Go.
A valuation of 9 billion dollars
Since then, Niantic has continued to develop games and especially technologies that are made available to other studios to design their own augmented reality experiences. The integration of virtual objects and creatures into the real environment is one of the definitions of the metaverse! And the company received a major reinforcement: the Coatue fund invested 300 million dollars in Niantic, which values the company at 9 billion.
This new money will allow Niantic to invest in its current games and future applications, expand the Lightship platform for third-party developers, and ” building our vision of the Real World metaverse », Explains the press release. ” We are building a future where the real world is covered with digital creations, entertainment and information, making it more magical, more fun and more informative ”Said John Hanke, Founder and CEO of Niantic.
The principle that guides Niantic’s creations and development platform is to position 3D objects on a world map. An idea that will play a vital role in the next IT transition, adds Coatue. And the fund is probably not wrong. The studio launched its new Lightship toolkit a few days ago, which allows developers to design their own metaverse.