SEOUL — Ifland, a metaverse platform launched by SK Telecom, a top mobile carrier in South Korea, made its global debut. The global version, which supports English, Chinese, and Japanese,
will provide differentiated metaverse communication experiences in 49 countries.
SK Telecom (SKT) vowed to grow Ifland into a global No. 1 social metaverse platform by actively utilizing K-pop content, developing joint content with overseas partners, and strengthening communication functions.
As of the third quarter of 2022, the cumulative number of Ifland users surpassed 12.8 million. SKT said that the platform, introduced in July 2021, has grown into the best social metaverse in South Korea. “We will show the potential of K-metaverse in Europe, the United States, the Middle East, and East Asia beyond South Korea,” SKT’s metaverse business head Yang Maeng-seok said in a statement on November 23.
SKT will present various K-pop live content every week. More than 50 percent of Ifland’s K-pop content will be provided in English, targeting overseas K-pop fans. There will be various K-pop content for overseas fans like auditions for K-pop trainees and fostering rookie idols.
SKT would establish partnerships with major telecom operators on each continent, such as e& in the United Arab Emirates and Singtel in Singapore, to develop specialized functions, co-produce popular local content, and promote various metaverse events.
Global lounges and avatars of various skin colors have been introduced to help overseas users experience the metaverse easily by updating major functions. The direct message function activates communication between group founders and participants. The 3D “speech balloon” function was applied to the top of avatars. A real-time voting function checks the opinions of participants, and a “motion sharing” function allows users to apply their expression to avatars.
The metaverse is a collective virtual shared space, created by the convergence of virtually enhanced physical reality and physically persistent virtual space. It describes a future internet of persistent, shared, 3D virtual spaces linked into a perceived virtual universe. SKT has tried to boost the popularization of its metaverse platform by running special programs.
Ifland maximizes user experience through various virtual spaces and avatars. Based on the popularity of K-pop and Hallyu (Korean cultural wave), SKT hopes that metaverse performances and fan meetings capable of overcoming geographical limitations will attract great attention from global fans.
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