📡 5G’s money maker: The Metaverse


August 13, 2021

The Hustle

Here’s an uplifting piece of history to start off your Friday: After Fredric Baur — the creator of the Pringles can — passed away in 2008, his family buried his cremated remains… in a Pringles can.

Today’s rundown:

  • 5G dreams: Telcos are going all-in on the metaverse.
  • Salesforce+: The CRM giant joins the streaming wars.
  • 3-2-1… Detonate: Inside the family business that blows stuff up.

Let’s do it.

The big idea
5g tower with lasers

Telecom providers will spend $720B on 5G. How will they make money back?

You’ve probably seen ads for it, but what is 5G?

It’s the newest cellular network which promises faster download speeds and 100x traffic capacity (translation: a lot more Netflix streaming).

Winning 5G is so important for telecom firms that — in the US — a record $81B was spent just on FCC spectrum auctions (3-4x estimated spend).

To recoup that massive investment…

… telcos need more streams of revenue than simply selling data to customers.

One potential option: creating products for the metaverse, the buzzy term to describe virtual shared spaces where users are present (which may include AR or VR).

High-speed 5G networks will power the metaverse

And global telcos have rolled out programs to capture the value, per Bloomberg:

  • China Mobile: The world’s largest carrier by subscribers unveiled the Mobile Cloud VR, “a platform where users can watch 360-degree content” including concerts and sports events.
  • SK Telecom: A leading South Korean carrier launched Ifland, a metaverse platform “which allows users to socialize in different virtual environments via avatars.”
  • Verizon: The US carrier partnered with the NFL to “develop virtual Superbowl experiences” like watching 3D replays in 360 degrees.

In total, Bloomberg says 5G spend could reach $720B between 2021-2025.

Can telcos actually win?

Nearly every tech company of note is dabbling in the metaverse:

  • Facebook CEO Zucky McMeta says the social network will be known as a “metaverse company” in the future
  • Microsoft owns mixed-reality glassmaker HoloLens, and CEO Satya Nadella has uttered the ghastly phrase “enterprise metaverse”
  • Apple is working on AR glasses

This doesn’t even take into account other players like Unity (gaming engine), Epic Games (“Fortnite” maker), and Roblox (sandbox game).

If telcos can’t crack the metaverse, at least they will always have “data overage fees” to buffer sales.

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SNIPPETS

Pretty Good Phone Privacy is the name of a solution that researchers say will mask location data on mobile devices with just a simple software upgrade. #privacy

Now on MFM: Why you need a chief automation officer. #mfm

Curious about launching an email newsletter? Check out Scott Nixon’s AMA on Aug. 19. RSVP here! #hustle-picks

YouTube suspended Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul after the politician posted a video denying mask-wearing to curb the spread of COVID-19. #big-tech

Video: Watch how Ford tests its Mustang Mach-E performance in extreme weather. Oh, and the driver is a robot. #emerging-tech

A Dutch family liquidated everything to buy bitcoin at $900. Now, they’re stashing their fortune in vaults on 4 continents. #fintech-cryptocurrency

The California Energy Commission approved a proposal requiring many new commercial buildings to have solar power and battery storage. #clean-energy

Gotta run: Adidas offloaded Reebok to Authentic Brands Group, whose portfolio includes Forever 21 and Brooks Brothers, in a $2.5B deal. Adidas paid $3.8B for the brand in 2006. #ecommerce-retail

Streaming Wars
Salesforce logo

(Photo Illustration by Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

The latest player in the streaming wars is a B2B software company

Salesforce announced plans to launch its own streaming service, Salesforce+, in an effort to expand from traditional paid marketing to owned and operated media, per Axios.

The firm plans to debut the free, on-demand service at its annual Dreamforce event in September.

Salesforce is taking cues from Netflix…

… and boosting upfront investments. So far, those efforts include:

  • Hiring ~50 editorial leads for the service
  • Building an in-house studio to film and produce the content
  • Producing 6 original series to debut upon launch

While Salesforce+ is expected to start with original programming, the firm eventually wants to feature content from its clients.

But don’t expect the next “Stranger Things”

Programming on the service appears to be more MasterClass than Netflix, with originals ranging in topic from professional growth to business skill development.

Salesforce isn’t the 1st B2B software company to move into owned media:

  • In February, HubSpot acquired The Hustle (yours truly)
  • TheSkimm is reportedly exploring a sale to a non-media company

We’ll be keeping a close eye on this trend as more companies follow suit.

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BOOM
demolition

Source: Controlled Demolition, Inc.

The family business that’s been blowing stuff up since 1947

The Loizeaux family business is booming. Literally.

For 3 generations, the Loizeauxs have operated Controlled Demolition Inc. (CDI). They use explosives to turn massive structures into tidy piles of rubble in seconds.

And it all started in 1947…

… when CDI’s founder, John D. “Jack” Loizeaux flattened his 1st structure. Over the decades since, Jack’s wife, sons, and descendents have played key roles in CDI’s business.

CDI really hit the ground running in 1957 when it imploded 3 buildings in Washington to make way for the US Department of State headquarters.

CDI also holds numerous world records, including:

  • The world’s largest structure (by volume)… demolished with explosives.
  • The tallest man-made structure… demolished with explosives.
  • The world’s largest building (by square footage)… demolished with explosives.

Most recently, CDI helped first responders safely bring down part of a building in Surfside, Florida, following the tragic collapse that killed 98 people.

CDI is also a… media company?

CDI has a YouTube channel that boasts 44m+ views and showcases its work imploding things like hotels, bridges, and chimneys.

The company has also worked with Hollywood on explosions in films like “Lethal Weapon 3,” “Enemy of the State,” and “The Dark Knight.”

If you’ve seen “The Dark Knight,” you know the scene where the Joker blows up an entire hospital. Well, now you also know that it was actually the Loizeaux family doing the blowing up.

In case explosions are your thing, here’s a 10-minute video of CDI imploding massive buildings to soothing music.

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AROUND THE WEB

🍔Wow: This man has eaten 32k+ Big Macs since 1972, currently averaging 2 per day. Stranger yet, he has kept every box and receipt.

🔥Chill out: Check out this incredible matchstick-themed stop-motion animation from artist Tomohiro Okazaki. Not only is it very cool, it’s oddly relaxing!

🦙Wild story: Geronimo the alpaca is set to be euthanized after failing 2 bovine tuberculosis tests, per British law. But his owner says they were false positives due to a recent vaccine, and now people around the world are rallying to save him.

🎺Haha: Remix master The Kiffness is back with a new catchy tune featuring a small gray cat. And a trumpet solo.

🍼Wholesome: Japanese parents who can’t introduce new family members in person due to the pandemic are sending relatives cute bags of rice that match the weight of their newborns.

🧹How to: Lifehacker rounds up 10 TikTok cleaning hacks that actually work and will leave your home looking fresh.

Meme of the day
cell phone plan meme

We all been there (Source: Pinterest)

Shower Thoughts
  1. “‘Part of a complete breakfast’ is a nice way of saying ‘not a complete breakfast.’”
  2. “We all probably have a talent for something that we didn’t try yet.”
  3. “Dogs probably think they have a 100% success rate protecting the house from the mailman.”
  4. “In 100 years the internet will be full of dead accounts.”
  5. “Being bored in your own house is somehow better than being bored at someone else’s house.”
  6. “If humanity ever discovers a portal to a different dimension, we’d probably use it to dispose of trash.”
via Reddit
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Look at you, smarty pants. You’ve already shared The Hustle with {referral_count} friends and enemies.

But hey, just because you’re a business nerd doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a cool bevvy. Get {10-referral_count} more referrals and we’ll send you a pint glass etched with The Hustle logo.

Anyway, here’s a message you can use to share with your friends:

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Always be Hustlin' tee

You’re close to the most coveted item in Hustle-land: The Always Be Hustlin Tee.

The fabric? Luxurious. The cut? Relaxed, yet refined. The message? Indisputable.

Share this link with {25 – referral_count} more of your friends to get the goods:

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Hustle Hoodie

Damn, you’re on a roll. You’ve got the pint glass. You’ve got the hat. It’s time to complete your collection, don’t you think?

Get {50 – referral_count} more referrals and we’ll send you our favorite piece of Hustle swag: The Startup Sweatshirt. Slipping into this piece of fleece might just transport you to Silicon Valley (or maybe somewhere better, your pick).

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Hey, we see you. You’re out there spreading the gospel of The Hustle like it’s nobody’s business. Seems like you might be ready for a little more…

Get {100 – referral_count} more referrals and we’ll slide you a free subscription to Trends.

And no, this ain’t an ad. We just think you’re the kinda person who would thrive in our top-tier community (it’s usually $299) full of founders, investors, and builders (AKA ambitious, no B.S. business folks like you — and enjoy our premium research and content.

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Plane

If you love us so much why don’t you just marry us?

Get {1000 – referral_count} more referrals and we’ll fly you to The Hustle HQ in beautiful, downtown eastern Austin, Texas. Round-trip flight, 2 nights in a hotel downtown, and some wining and dining with The Hustle fam.

Heck, you practically work here anyway. Copy & paste this link to share:

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Psst

How'd Bezos build a billion dollar empire?

In 1994, Jeff Bezos discovered a shocking stat: Internet usage grew 2,300% per year.

Data shows where markets are headed.

And that’s why we built Trends — to show you up-and-coming market opportunities about to explode. Interested?

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