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In a world increasingly hungry for experience, virtual reality (VR) has long been touted as the next big way for brands and consumers to connect. But creating VR worlds is not cheap – and without a way to market them through advertising, this potential has remained unsatisfied.
Because the VR / AR monetization platform team Gaze did not just find a new marketing approach to the experiential content in VR worlds – they also built the platform to bring it to life. And now, they offer the world the opportunity to invest in the business through their token sales – the kind of opportunity typically reserved for venture capitalists based in Silicon Valley.
VR Needs a New Monetization Model
The direct monetization of virtual reality is quite limited – it is mainly about the initial purchase of hardware, then types of media purchases / applications. Although there are some streams of micro-transactions available – for example Decentraland, they are very limited.
On the other hand, the Internet is the biggest advertising expense, thanks to marketing models that have been developed and have continued to evolve to suit the media. The marketing efforts of virtual reality through advertising have tended to use these same models, but with limited success. Simple impressions do not accurately reflect the contributions of several brands; the inability to find an effective way to process micropayments has made it difficult for users to pay for content consumption.
But as attention shifts from traditional screens to virtual reality and augmented reality, brands are actively seeking to be present in these worlds.
How Gaze Monetizes VR
Imagine putting on your VR headset and attending a concert of your favorite band. Remember that you are always on your couch – it's just that you experience the concert in a more immersive way thanks to your VR headset.
After being at the concert for a while, you would be considered "immersed" in the concert. What Gaze does, is use its proprietary technology called "Gaze Control" to track where you look, and for how long, to determine if you're immersed in the content (like the concert) and for how much time.
And monetization opportunities begin: if you can measure the immersion of the content – essentially, the attention of the user – then you can charge the marks for access. So imagine that a music streaming service is sponsoring the concert (there is no reason why you can not sponsor a concert in RV like a real gig). Gaze Control measures and tracks the attention volume of the user that the group has attracted. The sponsor obtains this information and pays the group according to the volume of Gaze. Payments are not made in cash – they are paid in Gaze Coin, which is the cryptocurrency of the platform (more details below).
This is a win-win configuration: sponsors get measurable and controllable results for content consumption; Content creators are rewarded for creating engaging content.
Not a music fan? Imagine that you are in the market for a new pair of shoes. Rather than fighting the crowds in order to get the full experience of buying your favorite store, you put on your VR headset and head to the virtual mall.
At the virtual mall, you enter the virtual store of your favorite retailer, with music and vendors to help you. You see hundreds of pairs of shoes on offer, and browse until you find a pair that you like. Gaze Control means that the retailer has data on what you have been watching, and may charge brands accordingly for the attention of the user they have received.
And if the content creator – in this case, the shoe brand – is really innovative, he can even pay you a small amount of Gaze Coin to interact with his brand and his products.
The Technology Behind Gaze
In a nutshell, Gaze Control is an API that allows the company to monitor and track the length of time a user is using or consuming paid content or content – whether by watching or interacting with him.
These data allow companies to pay several parties for their contribution to attracting the attention of the user. For example, a retailer may charge brands for "advertising space" in their virtual store, as well as to reward VIP customers. By using the same data, brands can also choose to reward their most valuable customers – perhaps using different criteria from those of the retailer – for content consumption or interaction.
The management of a potentially very high volume of very small payments is not economical with fiat. But cryptocurrencies, developed with micropayments in mind, are both a quick and economical solution.
In the Gaze universe, the GZE token is the cryptocurrency of one's choice. An Ethereum-backed token designed to comply with the E20 standard, it can be stored in the vast majority of Ethereum wallets currently available.
What you need to know to become a member of ICO
First and foremost, the Gaze team is a strong and experienced group – not something that many projects can boast about, or that many investors consider.
CEO and founder Johnny Peters led revolutionary entertainment and technology projects at BSkyB, KGrind and Bravo. CTO Bok Khoo is one of the leading developers of Ethereum ecosystem. He has also gained serious experience in the financial services of APAC and Europe. Landon Curry is director of the RV technical team, and the man behind eBay's first department store VR, as well as Red Bull's first VR racing simulator.
The Advisory Committee includes Jeremy Lam, product manager at OmiseGO; founder of Bitcoin and BTC.sx cryptocurrency trading platform (now Magnr), George Samman; and Travis Rice, well-known adviser to the RV industry and co-founder of the global VR company The LENS Group.
The Gaze team wants to raise a minimum of 2 million US dollars, with an ideal goal of 12 million dollars. The ICO is capped at 35 million US dollars – which means that if this amount is increased, the sale will end immediately.
When the ICO will be launched on December 10, 2017, 1 GZE will have a value of about 0.35 ETH, the token used to store and transfer the value on the Ethereum platform. The ICO should last 7 days and offer 70% of the total chips. The remaining 30% tokens will be distributed to the Gaze team – advisers (5%), employees (10%), contractors (5%); and a 10% reserve or user growth pool.
It should be noted that there is a relatively high level of symbolic retention among people who exploit Gaze – which is usually a good sign. This means that people who run the business from day to day have a great financial interest in making it a success.
To learn more about the technology stack and market opportunities, see the Gaze white paper – available here in English, and here in a variety other languages.