March 27, 2024
Saudi Arabia Unveils 'Cultural' Metaverse in Honor of Founding Day
Policy & Regulation

Saudi Arabia Unveils ‘Cultural’ Metaverse in Honor of Founding Day

In a bold step towards preserving and showcasing its rich cultural legacy, the Saudi Arabian Ministry of Culture unveiled the Cultural Universe metaverse on the occasion of the nation’s founding day. This innovative initiative, launched on February 22, offers users a virtual journey through Saudi Arabia’s extensive history, dating back to 1727.

Developed on Oracle’s Hyperledger Fabric 2.5 blockchain technology and powered by droppGroup’s Generative Media Intelligence AI system, droppPhygital, the Cultural Universe metaverse provides an immersive experience. Adopting a first-person shooter approach, users can freely explore the virtual world, traversing a common path alongside others. As they navigate the landscape, users encounter virtual representations of historical events, triggering detailed voice audio explanations in Arabic.

The Cultural Universe is a multifaceted platform, encompassing sectors dedicated to music, art, history, food, crafts, and mini-video games, all centred around Saudi heritage. Accessible via various digital devices, including websites, mobile phones, and virtual reality headsets, the service emphasizes cross-platform compatibility, underscoring the Ministry of Culture’s commitment to inclusivity.

In an official statement, the Saudi government emphasized the metaverse’s role in enabling a diverse global audience to explore and engage with Saudi culture. The Ministry of Culture views this initiative as a transformative moment, heralding a cultural revolution aimed at preserving and promoting the nation’s identity.

Meanwhile, industry experts suggest that Saudi Arabia, along with other Middle Eastern nations, is moving beyond the initial hype surrounding the metaverse to leverage its potential for economic growth. Samuel Huber, CEO of LandVault, a metaverse firm operating in the region, highlighted the growing interest among Middle Eastern governments, particularly in the UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar, in digitalizing infrastructure to foster economic development.

Huber emphasized the metaverse’s role as a pivotal component alongside blockchain and AI in the region’s economic diversification efforts. With governments increasingly embracing digital innovation, the metaverse is poised to play a crucial role in shaping the future economic landscape of the Middle East.


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