The Digital Pets Company launches crypto dogs for the metaverse
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The Digital Pets Company said it is launching AI-powered 3D digital dogs as companions to the metaverse.
The dogs are secured as non-fungible tokens (NFTs), which can be used to authenticate unique digital items. It’s the antidote to NFT cats, which another gaming startup, Tiny Rebel Games, announced in March with the goal of creating digital cats. Both companies are confident that the concept of Nintendogs will work well with NFTs.
To commercialize its technology, The Digital Pets Company has raised pre-seed funding from Outlier Ventures, Hawk Digital, MaxStealth and angel investor Rafi Gidron, who started Chromatis and sold it to Lucent for $4.8 billion. The startup is in talks with other potential investors.
The interoperable, persistent-state digital companions allow owners to interact with them, in virtual reality worlds, augmented reality, mobile devices or web apps.
By combining AI, extended reality (XR) and blockchain technologies, the company creates a continuous mutual emotional relationship with a virtual being in virtual environments, apps and games. Each dog is unique in their appearance and personality, powered by the startup’s proprietary PetOS technology.
Itay Hasid is CEO of The Digital Pets Company.
The company’s mission is to create lifelike interactions using voice, visual and touch communication so that people can interact with their digital dogs in the same way as their physical pets. They can name them, train them and play with other people and their digital dogs when they meet.
All digital dogs, along with their visual and personality traits, are secured as NFTs on the Ethereum blockchain. Each NFT will belong to one digital wallet owned by a specific user. The startup’s unique blockchain implementation allows users to care for the Digital Dog and train it together with other users, such as family members and friends.
Just like in real life, a digital dog can be a family dog or an office dog. The NFTs are stored as ERC-721 tokens and hosted on the InterPlanetary File System (IPFS). Each NFT is connected to a real Digital Dog via the patented PetOS.
Digital Dogs will be used in a variety of virtual environments in the metaverse through the company’s proprietary software development kit (SDK). The Digital Pets Company will sell NFTs that allow digital dog owners to get to know and train their dogs through one-on-one digital interactions.
The owners will use tokens to train the digital dogs by providing positive incentives, just like real dogs. The startup will develop social interaction in digital playgrounds where people and dogs can socialize.
“Over the next decade, we will see more and more virtual spaces where people will spend time and create new interactions,” Itay Hasid, CEO of The Digital Pets Company, said in a statement. “These spaces will be very empty and lonely with no suitable content, connecting people and making substantial social relationships. Dogs, humans’ best friends, make us happier and help us connect with new people. I believe that artificial intelligence, animation and multisensory communication combining voice, sight and touch will make it possible to create real relationships, just like in the physical world, and to fulfill social and emotional needs.”
The Digital Pets Company lets you own NFT dogs.
Founded in July 2021, The Digital Pets Company is led by dog-loving engineers and developers. The team consists of experts in AI, machine learning and virtual reality. Itay Hasid, who co-founded the startup with Maciej Miarecki and Amit Yogev, is a 34-year-old serial entrepreneur who founded the startup companies Mobeego (acquired by Life Clips), Kado and Qase, among others.
Digital identity is becoming more important than ever. Many people buy avatars that will represent them in online social experiences, dressing them in appropriate clothing and footwear to express the owner’s unique digital identity. Giant companies like Meta Platforms (formerly Facebook) are even proposing to create avatars that can guide users through different virtual worlds, establishing a unified and enduring digital identity.
The Digital Pets Company has released the Laika Web app demo. Named after the first dog in space, Laika is the company’s first digital dog. As a proof of concept, Laika has laid a strong foundation for a new living, machine learning species, leveraging voice AI, extended reality and blockchain technologies in a way that has never been done before.
In addition to Laika, The Digital Pets Company is currently finalizing the construction of its digital laboratory. The lab is a unique 3D virtual space that currently contains the first generation of embryos from the Digital Dogs. These still grow in incubators. Owners have access to the same space where they can watch the dogs develop, name them and train them soon.
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