Alibaba Jumps On The Metaverse Bandwagon With Proposed Gaming Unit: Report

Metaverse has created quite a stir, with tech and cryptocurrency projects making a beeline into this virtual world. Not wanting to be left behind, Chinese Internet tech giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd - ADR BABA is drawing up the blueprint for its own metaverse.

What Happened: Alibaba has registered a new company named Yuanjing Shengsheng in Beijing to test the gaming potential of the metaverse, the South China Morning Post reported.

Yuanjing Shensheng has been registered as a company offering software development and services and has 10 million yuan ($1.6 million) in registered capital, the report said, citing public registry tracking firm Tianyancha.

A report in a local media outlet, citing unnamed Alibaba staff, said the unit is likely to focus on the metaverse.

The development, according to the report, underlines Alibaba's intent to make a splash in the metaverse following similar actions by its Chinese peers, including Tencent Holdings ADR TCEHY, Baidu, Inc. BIDU and NetEase, Inc. NTES.

The setting up of the unit is to leverage the company's edge and cloud computing technology to establish the essential infrastructure for the metaverse, the SCMP reported, citing an analyst at Omdia.

Alibaba has already submitted applications to trademark the Chinese terms for "Ali Metaverse," "Taobao Metaverse" and "DingDing Metaverse," the report said.

Related Link: How Is Alibaba Stock Shaping Up Ahead Of Its Analyst Day Scheduled For The Upcoming Week

Why It's Important: The term metaverse was coined by Neal Stephenson in his 1992 science fiction novel "Snow Crash." It is an online virtual world that uses AR, VR, 3D holographic avatars and video to offer an alternative to real-world experience.

Social media giant Facebook recently rebranded itself as Meta Platforms Inc FB, emphasizing its accent on metaverse.

Graphic chip giant Nvidia Corporation NVDA announced Omniverse, a key enabler/platform for the development of the metaverse across a wide range of vertical apps, including industrial, manufacturing, design, engineering and autonomous vehicles/robotics. The metaverse could present Nvidia with a $10 billion incremental market opportunity over the next five years, Wells Fargo analyst Aaron Rakers said in a recent note.

Chinese search engine Baidu reportedly said in a statement it plans to host its annual AI developer conference "Create 2021" on the Xirang app this year. The company said the app will allow up to 100,000 attendees to experience immersive and interactive sound and visual effects simultaneously.

Alibaba's initiatives come at a time Chinese regulators are wielding their whip on online gaming companies. Alibaba itself has been at the receiving end of regulatory crackdowns that have intensified since late last year and left the company battered.

BABA Price Action: At last check Tuesday afternoon, Alibaba shares were up 3.48% to $126.55.

Related Link: Alibaba Vs. Who's Winning The Chinese E-Commerce Battle?

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