Our world today is undeniably digital. Technology, society, everything is changing so fast that we are almost unrecognisable from 20 years ago. Through this time, there has been a clear innovation curve in the advancement of gaming, VR and other 3D technologies. Each year these digital worlds are becoming more and more photorealistic, pushing our trajectory of technological adoption more towards the concept of ‘digital only’ and so creating a compelling argument for a future that is driven by native digital economies that are built around entire virtual world communities and ecosystems of individuals who will never meet face to face.
Gaming, Virtual Assets, Cloud Computing
There are currently more than 2.7 billion video gamers globally, putting the gaming market at an estimated worth of USD$159.3 Billion in 2020 — this is a huge 76.8% increase from what was forecasted for 2020 back in 2016 at a total worth of only USD$90.07 Billion. The industry is experiencing explosive growth as hardware and software advancements push towards more cinematic and immersive environments that are able to engage more and more players and take in-game realism to a whole new level — like with Epic Games’ Unreal Engine V, which will enable developers to directly import high-quality models into the game engine for real time rendering.
Today, over 85% of the industries revenue comes from free-to-play games, highlighting a massive shift in the industry from relying on upfront premiums to incentivising players to perform micro-transactions on virtual in-game items and goods — a large amount of which is purely cosmetic in the form of skins or costumes. Virtual goods are already a USD$50 billion-plus annual market and with the eventual shift to cloud streaming and gaming subscription services like Google Stadia, the in-game assets trend is bound to grow even more as developers find new ways to monetize and players spend more time interacting in the game environment.
Whilst today, entertainment purposes hold the most prevalent applications for native digital worlds and metaverses, the future is likely to be much more far reaching in infiltrating our everyday lives. Here, self expression will play a huge role in forming customizable, engaging digital experiences that allow for us to connect with others and re-create our identities. These concepts of individualism, identity and self-expression are rooted as some of our most core values as humans, and ultimately, form our human nature. Being able to properly self express in a digital environment is fundamental, and digital fashion will form a HUGE part in enabling this.
Today, the digital fashion designer landscape is disjointed and disconnected. Viable distribution channels for digital fashion designers are extremely limited and often dominated by larger studios, falling into the broader fashion industry’s current ‘winner takes all’ dominance, where small innovative designers struggle finding exposure against the monopoly of the major labels.
Designers, brands work almost completely siloed, they keep their cards very close to their chest, not willing to share or collaborate in the fear of losing to competition or market share. This is not just with competing brands, but sometimes even with other divisions within the same company. This lack of transparency and knowledge transfer slows down the innovation in the industry dramatically and puts creativity in an isolated black box.
DIGITALAX first Introduced a Scalable Approach to Scaling the Digital Fashion Industry back in Late 2020. Here, our vision was built around enabling the development of new digital economies of scale that empower true digital self expression.
And, in order to achieve this, our technological approach aims at developing stronger and more streamlined cross-collaboration channels amongst the Developers and Digital Fashion Designers.
There is huge fundamental and scalable value in properly establishing these networks, which will act to enable both the fashion industry in exploring new technological use cases and also the gaming developer community in being able to fluently translate fashion creativity into the virtual worlds of tomorrow.
Promoting this cross collaboration and open source sharing innovation amongst Designers X Developers is going to open up a whole new world of business models and use cases. Whole new trillion dollar applications of opportunity around Open Source, Programmability, NFTs, Gaming, VR, Virtual Goods.
Bringing native NFT use cases to digital fashion enables a huge leap for the industry in terms of beginning to address and solve the current challenges faced around digital ownership, open source innovation and multi-platform distribution across virtual environments.
Our NFTs will allow for programmable and composable fashion where a designer can fractionalise the patterns, materials, textures of their digital garment and open source this for the wider digital fashion and developer community to leverage and build on. The materials, patterns, textures can be backed by real world assets like Gold, diamonds, cotton and also cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, DAI, to add more value and liquidity into the garments and bring about new pricing frameworks and standards for digital fashion.
The original designer’s IP can also be authenticated and then effectively traced across the entire digital fashion supply chain journey.
All of the materials, patterns, textures in our digital libraries will be Open Source for composability. They will also enforce secondary fractional garment ownership sales for the original designers and facilitate new models and applications of programmable digital scarcity, pay per material/texture models.
Further, all completed digital garment designs will be linked with the DIGITALAX Open Digital Fashion License, allowing for a complete IP transfer for any buyer of the full garment — reducing lengthy and slow legal complexity when it comes to deploying these assets across virtual settings. This unique license combination ensures an open source scalable P2P marketplace for designers, developers, players, of the underlying material assets, whilst still defining standards on the transferability of the whole garment.
We are taking care of the full digital fashion supply chain for streamlined and direct cross-virtual deployment.
Democratising this whole supply chain process means that now even junior designers and developers can experiment, gain access to and distribute their creativity into global digital landscapes of gaming, VR — removing limitations and overshadowing by large fashion houses.
3D Immersive Stores
The concept of 3D immersive virtual stores filled with the latest collection of digital garments will allow shoppers to virtually try on the clothes, feel the texture of the materials and fabrics and engage with hyper personalised sizes that are unique and custom fit. These stores will also allow for new amazing digital retail and shopping experiences that are finely attuned in enabling shoppers to be able to fully interact with the messaging and feel of the brand i.e. a swimsuit collection displayed on a virtual beach in Hawaii.
Digital fashion will also completely upheave current wasteful industry practices around manufacturing, material dyeing and ‘fast fashion’ production cycles. Digital fashion can be created with almost zero waste and then be instantly ‘delivered’ online within a matter of seconds to anyone in the world. Time to market is much more streamlined and allows for flexibility in reaction time i.e. being able to quickly distribute more designs of a certain product that becomes hugely successful overnight without requiring any coordination across a clunky supply chain.
Digital In-Game Concerts, Merchandising
Further, with digital only, designers are no longer limited by physical principles — being able to build fashion that is ready couture, fully captures creative genius and contains completely new sets of materials, colours and textures. Native digital fashion will be vital in creating and building more realistic metaverses where brands and designers can distribute their fashion to an entirely new customer base of players and interactors through new business models like merchandising for digitally-in-game performed concerts or shows — Imagine being able to wear a digital Travis Scott fan T-Shirt at the metaverse arena (In fact, Fortnite actually did this!), or being able to purchase limited edition Nike shoes at direct release into the game.
Advertising models that we know of today will also be completely upheaved — players will have sponsored digital clothing, being requested by brands to wear the digital garments during E-Sports events or even in casual multi-player.
Interoperable 3D Garments
Secondary peer-2-peer digital fashion marketplaces, where digital fashion designers, independents and brands, can work along side developers for shipping interoperable 3D garments across different graphic environments. These garments can be bought and sold into different outfits that are fully interoperable and real time motion responsive across different virtual environments. They will fully cater for the native digital economy in terms of being able to provide cross-platform interoperability — these garments won’t be locked into centralised digital ecosystems or rely on third parties, but rather create unidirectional value for a buyer and seller, where they can be traded against other virtual assets or used by players as strong identity markers in different virtual environments. This will allow for new monetisation streams and business models that are customised, IP secure with unified platform licensing and incentivised around creativity.
The collaboration opportunity in all of this is enormous. Designer X Developer collaboration unlocks viable distribution channels and applications.
This is the future.
It is saying farewell to larger studio dominance, “winner takes all” dominance, major label monopoly. It is driving the digital fashion, gaming, VR industries forward. It is helping to create Digital Economies of Scale that aren’t bound or limited by creativity or technical resource.
DIGITALAX is taking the leadership role in enabling the Designer X Developer collaboration. Our movement is positioned to connect digital fashion designers and brands with the developer community and create pathways for designers to be able to work with developers for direct interoperable deployment into games, metaverses.
Our Operating System is all about fostering this network into full maturity. We are dedicated to setting new native industry standards for streamlined efficient digital fashion supply chains, fractional garment ownership, open source collaboration, garment composability, real-world value backed material assets, native digital fashion pricing frameworks and most importantly, cross-game fashion identity interoperability — enabling players to take their garments from one virtual environment to another for a seamless digital experience.
We are tackling cross-platform interoperability of 3D information transfer through the development of a new file format and intercommunication channel. You can see the latest revisions and R&D across our DASH file here.