Spotify has made a move towards the Metaverse and launched a virtual island in the hit game Roblox where people share 3D experiences.
Roblox has 40 million daily active users, and many observers think its shared 3D worlds offer a vision of the ‘Metaverse’ – online worlds where people will live and work together in the near future.
The term Metaverse became well known when Mark Zuckerberg rebranded Facebook as Meta, promising that the company would focus on the Metaverse in coming years.
Roblox is enormously popular with children and teenagers and the new ‘island’ marks the first time a music-streaming company has moved into Roblox.
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Roblox’s new Spotify Island offers what the company describes as a “paradise of sound where fans and artists from all over the world can hang out and explore a wonderland of sounds, quests, and exclusive merch".
The company said: TThrough Spotify Island, we’re creating an easy opportunity for artists to connect with fans and to partner with Spotify on the creation of in-game virtual merchandise. Spotify’s portion of those sales will go directly back to the artists themselves.
“We’ll work with artists to create more opportunities like this in the months ahead.”
From the main Spotify Island, gamers will be able to portal out to other themed islands that will come to life throughout the year.
The first themed experience on Spotify Island is K-Park, an homage to all things K-Pop.
K-Park will give fans the chance to interact with K-Pop artists Stray Kids and SUNMI.
Spotify is valued at more than $20bn (£16bn) and has been a pioneer in the world of music streaming.
When Daniel Ek launched Spotify in 2008, the world was in the depths of the credit crunch, and many were sceptical that the Swedish start-up could succeed.
At the time, paid downloads from iTunes reigned supreme in digital music, and music labels were battling an epidemic of piracy via BitTorrent sites and file-sharing services.
Around 95% of music downloads were illegal at the time.
Ek said that his goal with Spotify was to create something that was ‘easier to use’ than BitTorrent and Limewire. He famously said: "You can never legislate away from piracy. Laws can definitely help, but it doesn't take away the problem. The only way to solve the problem was to create a service that was better than piracy and at the same time compensates the music industry."
Zuckerberg said later: "Daniel Ek of Spotify just saw the opportunities of streaming music before anyone else."
Watch: Spotify expands into Roblox, launches Spotify Island