Seoul’s Metaverse Project Is Now Available for Mass

Seoul Mayor Oh Se-hoon claims that citizens will be able to view official papers, lodge grievances, and get tax-related inquiries answered in the virtual setting.

With the inauguration of the Metaverse Seoul initiative by the Seoul Metropolitan Government, residents of South Korea’s capital can now access city services in a virtual environment.

On January 16, after the project’s beta testing, Seoul Mayor Oh Se-hoon declared the start of the first phase of Metaverse Seoul. The nation’s capital’s mayor asserts that the internet will work as a “place of communication for people,” allowing residents to virtually travel to many of Seoul’s attractions, view official documents, voice specific issues, and receive help filing municipal taxes.

The city’s government reportedly spent roughly 2 billion won — $1.6 million — for the first phase of the metaverse project. Oh claims that the second phase will focus on facilitating older residents’ access to Metaverse Seoul, as they might have difficulty physically traveling to city offices. According to Statistica data, more than 17% of South Korea’s population was over 65 as of 2022.

South Korea has assumed leadership of some of the projects relating to the adoption of blockchain technology as the metaverse evolves. The country has 52 million residents and one of the fastest internet speeds in the world. In August, the city of Busan disclosed plans to collaborate with FTX to establish a cryptocurrency exchange. When FTX failed in November, the regional administration ceased cooperation with a number of its global centralized exchange partners.

Numerous companies have announced plans to set up virtual offices, indicating that interest in the metaverse has seemingly increased after Facebook’s name change from Facebook to Meta in October 2021. The demise of significant platforms like FTX, Voyager Digital, and Celsius Network, as well as the collapse of the bitcoin market, could have, nevertheless, delayed acceptance.

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