K-pop has become a really worldwide phenomenon due to its peculiar blend of addicting tunes, production values, slick choreography, and an endless procession of handsome South Korean artists who spend years in arduous studio systems learning to dance and sing in coordination.
Well, in the latter two years of the epidemic, many industries, including K-pop, saw tremendous technology developments, with various new endeavors for K-pop companies, including virtual fan engagement events and online concerts.
A growing number of K-pop acts have entered the metaverse, a shared virtual environment where individuals can interact with others through avatars, building virtual spaces to create closer and stronger connections with their fans. Let us know more about how K-pop stars enter into the world of metaverse right below.
What is Metaverse?
A metaverse is a method of simulating the physical world in digital contexts, and it often includes augmented reality functions and 3D virtual places. Virtual fan events have already been organized by K-pop labels, and a group called Aespa has avatars of its four members that appear digitally beside them.
Use of Metaverse Application in the K-pop Industry
K-pop is recognized for its cutting-edge technology, especially the metaverse. Digital technology has helped people stay in touch, particularly during the pandemic. The entertainment sector is also affected by this, as offline concerts are postponed. With its virtual reality component, Metaverse has emerged as one of the potential solutions to reconnect artists with fans—albeit via the digital sphere.
There are more and more projects and groups in K-pop that deal with metaverse applications. The group aespa, which was created as a group with virtual counterparts, is one of the well-known examples. Asepa is made up of four virtual avatars that stand in for the actual members. Since then, it has evolved into a key component from which aespa’s notion emerged.
The human members of Aespa would communicate digitally, work together, and develop close bonds with their virtual counterparts. The metaverse (“Kwangya”) that aespa has introduced now also includes other SM Entertainment artists. The 11-member girl group Eternity is an example of a group with entirely virtual members.
Advanced artificial intelligence was used to create the hyperrealistic virtual characters in the group Eternity (AI). Like aespa, Eternity has its own “world,” extending its metaverse further beyond its members. A number of well-known Korean tech firms, including SK Telecom, Kakao Entertainment, and Netmarble, have created their own metaverse technology for use in the market.
The impending virtual girl group from Metaverse Entertainment (MAVE), a partnership between Kakao Entertainment and Netmarble, is one example of this. As evidenced by Blackpink’s virtual avatar fan event and Alexa’s digital party in a metaverse platform, the metaverse is also used to improve fans’ interaction with the artists. This demonstrates the great range of what can be done in the metaverse.
Advantages of Metaverse in the K-pop Industry
You have seen above that how the metaverse can influence the Korean entertainment industry. Have a look at the benefits of a metaverse in the K-pop industry which are as follows:
- The main highlight of the metaverse application is the technology’s versatility and endless alternatives. There are no constraints in building a virtual world for virtual characters, which increases the creative freedom for businesses to incorporate into their projects.
- The Metaverse application would enable the growth of creative thoughts into new digital worlds, resulting in new industry advancements.
- Metaverse technology has expanded the potential “members” of AI-membered groups’ to mingle with real-life members. As previously said, AI members can express themselves more freely and might be invited to speak about societal issues. AI members are free of scandals and can be customized to fit any “character.” They are also simpler to manage and more willing to interact with their fans.
- Metaverse also aids in breaking down the restrictions of internet performance. While the pandemic reduces face-to-face interactions between fans and artists, the metaverse lets fans communicate more freely in a completely virtual realm.
This article focuses on the use of the metaverse and its consequences in the K-pop sector, an industry that takes pride in embracing new technology to advance. There have been developments in the sector, such as virtual members and the use of virtual reality (VR) in online concerts, even though it is still in the early phases of deployment. This does not, however, negate the dangers posed by the metaverse, where careless individuals can abuse it. Thus, the metaverse has given us a fascinating perspective on how new technologies can enlarge the digital world.