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Karim Nurani is an entrepreneur, an investor, the Chief Strategy Officer of Linqto, a cofounder of the Global Investor Conference, and the host of the Global Investor Podcast. If you’re even a little interested in technology, you’ve probably been hearing about Web3 and the metaverse nonstop for the last couple of years.
Gavin Wood, one of the people who helped start Ethereum, came up with the idea of Web3 in 2014. But it didn’t become popular until 2021, which was when digital currency became widely used. Last year, investors made more than 400% of their digital currency investments. People are learning more about blockchain technologies and how they can change the world. That’s the whole point of Web3.
Web3 and the metaverse are two different ideas. Web3 is the idea of a web that doesn’t have a central server and is built with blockchain technology. In the world of Web3, users have full control over their data and the content they create. The Web3 experience will be built around peer-to-peer transactions instead of the walled gardens that dominate online interactions right now.
The metaverse is something completely different. It’s a vision based on AR and VR technologies that is made for 3D user consumption. In the metaverse, your experience depends on which online “worlds” you choose to live in. The way Facebook or Meta sees the metaverse may be different from what other companies want to offer their customers.
It also goes without saying that companies like Meta will take a big cut of any business that happens in their virtual worlds. Instead of selling content peer-to-peer, you may have to pay middlemen. In Meta’s case, they plan to take an amazing 47.5% of sales in the metaverse.
Those are two very different ideas about how the web will change in the future. One is decentralized, and the other is built around the experiences that the biggest tech companies in the world have designed for you.
If there is a war over how the internet will change in the future, blockchain and Web3 companies are taking the fight to big tech. A lot of the big tech companies that invested in the metaverse, like Alphabet, Meta, Microsoft, and Snap, are no longer the best places to work in tech.
Working for any of the big tech companies will pay well, that’s for sure. But these other companies are very aggressive when it comes to taking away the best employees from big tech. One company is even making a training program to close any gaps between the skills needed for traditional tech jobs and those needed for Web3 jobs.
From 2020 to 2021, investments in blockchain-related startups jumped from $3.1 billion to $25.2 billion. One brief used data from CB Insights to find out how much money has been put into blockchain-based companies. It found that Alphabet, Blackrock, and Morgan Stanley were among the most active investors in the largest funding rounds. These three companies alone invested more than $3 billion. That’s a big war chest for blockchain companies, which helps them offer even better salaries than most big tech players.
One estimate says that the median salary for a blockchain developer in the U.S. is around $140,000. Software engineers can make up to $900,000 per year at companies like Coinbase, which was worth about $86 billion after it went public. Engineers at UMA who work on smart contracts can make between $120,000 and $200,000 a year. At Nirvana Interactive, full-stack Web3 developers make about $120,000 per year.
Blockchain salaries for top talent are on par with what other tech companies can offer, and you can get even more money in the form of shares. These companies are betting a lot on the future of Web3 technologies, so they pay people who are willing to take risks. Jobs at well-known tech companies might be safe, but it’s much less likely that you’ll make a lot of money through stock compensation.
Putting money into the future of the Internet
Users will decide which version of the internet will prevail. Even if companies put a lot of money into their metaverses, it will be hard for these digital experiences to take off if people aren’t interested in virtual worlds or if AR and VR technology don’t become more common.
Web3 also doesn’t see a clear way to win. But right now, a lot of blockchain companies are having a good time. With investments that have broken records in the last couple of years, these companies are now able to pay better salaries and take away some of the best engineers from big tech. It remains to be seen if they can use that talent to change the web with blockchain technologies.
At the time this was written and published, this information was correct. The information here is not advice about investments, taxes, or money. You should talk to a licensed professional about your situation to get advice.
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