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Boson Protocol to Sell Physical Fashion in a Virtual World

Posted by
Robert Hoogendoorn

Company paid $709,020 for virtual real estate at a premium location

Boson Protocol wants to create a fashion shopping mall inside the virtual world of Decentraland, and allow visitors to purchase goods. These goods are NFTs, which can then be redeemed for physical goods.

In the last week of May, Boson Protocol acquired a big piece of virtual land inside Decentraland, paying $709,020 or 759,360 MANA for it. There they will open a virtual mall where visitors can buy fashion NFTs that can be redeemed for a physical version of the same shoe, dress, shirt, or cap. 

Boson wants to bridge the gap between the virtual metaverse and the physical world. Their software solution allows artists, creators, and brands to reward gamers with real-world products. They will introduce something called a Commitment NFT, which basically bridges the divide between decentralized technology and the transfer and trade of physical goods. In short: the NFT represents a physical product. 

The rise of eCommerce changed the way people use the internet. Boson Protocol wants to facilitate decentralized commerce or dCommerce. This system enables the autonomous exchange of digital value for physical products and services. Ultimately this solution needs to minimize arbitration, cost, and the need for trust. 

A need for identity in online worlds

To some it might sound silly, to shop in a virtual world to buy something physical. However, we’re moving into a far more online world. In June 2017 only 15,8% of all sales in the UK happened online according to data from Statista. This number skyrocketed in 2020 to more than 36%, the biggest shift ever. In the United States, online retail doubled its market share in the past five years to 13.6% in Q2 2021, which was good for more than $215 billion during the first quarter of this year. 

While online shopping, boosted by the pandemic, becomes more common, the need for virtual identities and self-expression in virtual worlds increases as well. With Cryptovoxels, Decentraland, Somnium Space, and The Sandbox there are at least four dominant, blockchain-powered virtual worlds. According to DappRadar data, these four virtual worlds have been good for $89 million in all-time trading volume. However, this is only about digital land.

Decentraland
The Sandbox

Within these worlds, people want to express themselves. They buy unique names and digital clothing for their avatars. In the past 7 days, players have bought 3.67 ETH or $9,346 worth of clothes used in Decentraland. According to data from OpenSea, lifetime sales of Decentraland Wearables exceeds 2,874 ETH. At the current rate that would be more than $7,3 million. 

In short, people want to express themselves in the physical world as well as in the digital world. Boson gives consumers the ability to do both at the same time by combining virtual and physical fashion.

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