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(Pocket-lint) - There's a lot of talk about the metaverse out there right now, with Facebook changing its name to Meta and every other company seeming to jump on board, you might be wondering how we're all going to get to the metaverse.

Qualcomm might just have the answer, and it has showcased a range of its technology around augmented and virtual realities. We caught up with Hugo Swart, VP in product management, XR, at Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. to find out more.

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What is the metaverse?

From Qualcomm's point of view, according to Swart, "the metaverse is the new internet" - and it's going to have just as profound an impact as the world wide web has managed in the years since its invention and proliferation.

It means that you can actually inhabit the internet in a way that's unprecedented, bridging the physical and virtual worlds.

Accessing these worlds generally means either augmented or virtual reality at the moment, but there's increasingly room in the market for what's being dubbed "XR" by Qualcomm and others. Swart calls it "an umbrella term covering a spectrum of realities, from augmented reality glasses that I can see through... to virtual reality where it's a device that's fully occluded."

"Now, new devices are being introduced that count as mixed reality, that enable me to see the real world in a VR headset's display".

This lets you mix and match the real world with the digital, which unlocks loads of possibilities, letting you layer virtual information over real environments to be aware of both at one time.

Qualcomm's tech powers a range of XR devices, and brands itself as "the ticket to the metaverse".

This is due to the strength of its connected technologies, which can power leisure activities like games, to let people interact as virtual avatars, as well as more business-oriented options.

Snapdragon Spaces

Part of Qualcomm's approach in this area hinges on its newly-announced Snapdragon Spaces, which gives developers a dedicated SDK platform and tools to build head-worn augmented reality (AR) experiences to enable developers to help build the metaverse.

With over 50 AR and VR devices powered by Snapdragon technology, it's a safe bet that this will help propel the metaverse to even wider uses.

After all, being able to make content for the metaverse more easily is a huge part of getting people to sample it more easily, to make sure there's a wide range of experiences on offer.

According to Swart, Snapdragon Spaces means that we should see an explosion in creativity and variety in what you can actually do in the metaverse, led by developers rather than by Qualcomm itself.

So, the limits on what you might be able to try out in the metaverse really depend on what the developers among us are interested in making.