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Metaverse News

South Korean girl band gives us a look into the metaverse

The South Korean girl group MAVE’s debut music video went viral less than two months ago, garnering nearly 20 million views on YouTube and laying the groundwork for a possible global breakthrough. In this metaverse news, we prepare you with the band’s offerings in greater detail.

MAVE appears to be just another idolized K-pop band at first glance, with the exception that it only exists virtually. Its four members, SIU, ZENA, TYRA, and MARTY, reside in the metaverse. Their songs, dances, interviews, and even hairstyles were created by web designers and artificial intelligence.

Mave’s avatars

Han Su-min, a 19-year-old resident of Seoul, stated, “When I first saw Mave, I wasn’t sure if they were real people or virtual characters.”

Due to the frequency with which I use metaverse platforms with my friends, I believe I could become a fan of theirs.”

The group’s avatars, which are strikingly similar to humans, provide a glimpse of how the metaverse is likely to evolve as South Korea’s entertainment and technology industries collaborate on emerging technology.

It is also a major effort by the tech giant Kakao Corp (035720. KS) to dominate the entertainment industry. In addition to supporting MAVE: Kakao launched a $960 million tender offer to acquire South Korea’s first K-pop company, SM Entertainment, last week (041510. KQ).

Girls’ Generation, H.O.T., EXO, Red Velvet, Super Junior, SHINee, NCT Dream, and Aespa are among the well-known K-pop groups that call SM their home.

Kakao declined to comment on how it would manage the needs of real and virtual bands.

Metaverse was funded by Kakao

The company’s bet on the metaverse defies the prevailing trend. China’s Tencent Holdings 0700 and Facebook’s parent company Meta Platforms Inc META.O are examples of large technology companies. Currently, Hong Kong is reducing spending on virtual worlds in order to weather the economic downturn.

Kakao previously disclosed that it had invested 12 billion won in Metaverse Entertainment, a subsidiary it formed with gaming company Netmarble Corp (251270.KS), in order to establish it.

However, the company refrained from providing a revenue estimate for the project.

The CEO of Metaverse Entertainment, Chu Ji-yeon, described MAVE as a “ongoing” project that seeks to discover new business opportunities and technological solutions.

Quarter Languages

In South Korea, this concept is not novel. Adam, a virtual singer, debuted in 1998, and K/DA, whose members were inspired by League of Legends characters, debuted 20 years later. Neither party left.

Since then, however, virtual character creation technology in South Korea has advanced significantly. Developers utilized new technologies and artificial intelligence to produce facial expressions and minute details, such as hair streaks, according to the opinions of viewers.

Using an AI voice generator, its members can speak four languages: Korean, English, French, and Bahasa. However, they must rely on scripts written by humans because they cannot respond to verbal commands.

Using motion capture and real-time 3D rendering technology, human performers created the choreography in the music video for the group’s debut single “Pandora” as well as the vocals heard in the song.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many K-pop companies shifted to online content to satisfy fans who were confined to their homes. According to experts, this aided the development of such virtual characters.

Lee Jong-im thinks a pop culture critic who teaches at Seoul National University, fans became accustomed to communicating with and consuming non-face-to-face content from their idol groups over the course of nearly three years. It appears they are currently more receptive to the concept of combining real and virtual idol groups.

Even though virtual bands such as MAVE: are attracting attention for their novelty, there are still doubts as to whether they can compete with the interaction between traditional popular bands and their legions of fans.

Lee Gyu-tag, an associate professor of Korean cultural studies at George Mason University stated that Idols created through virtual reality will behave as intended. Undeniably, they will evolve into something resembling video technology, not K-pop.

However, MAVE creators and entertainment industry representative are optimistic about its potential.

Roh Shi-yong, head producer of a weekly music program on local TV station MBC that featured MAVEperformance: twice, said, “With so many comments received from all over the world, I’ve realized that viewers do want something new and that they are rather open-minded.”

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About MahKa

South Korean girl band gives us a look into the metaverseMahKa loves exploring the decentralized world. She writes about NFTs, the metaverse, Web3 and similar topics.

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