The United States Air Force has filed a trademark application hinting at the military branch potentially expanding into the metaverse.
According to a Thursday application submitted to the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, the Department of the Air Force trademarked the word "SpaceVerse," defined as “a secure digital metaverse that converges terrestrial and space physical and digital realities and provides synthetic and simulated extended-reality (XR) training, testing and operations environments.” It’s unclear if the initiative is connected to the U.S. Space Force, which according to its website is “organized under” the Air Force, but operates as a “separate and distinct branch of the armed services.”
The trademark application connected to activities in the metaverse followed several from a variety of firms including credit card companies Mastercard and American Express, footwear and apparel manufacturer Nike and the New York Stock Exchange. The various applications included trademarks on the use of logos and branding in a virtual environment as well as authenticating certain files with nonfungible tokens, or NFTs.
Some major brand names have launched virtual stores or other environments for users following Facebook’s announcement in October 2021 that the social media giant would be rebranding to Meta. In February, U.S. bank JPMorgan entered the metaverse by launching a virtual lounge in the blockchain-based online world Decentraland. Samsung also launched a virtual store modeled after a real-world shop in New York City.
Of the six branches of the U.S. military — Marines, Coast Guard, Army, Navy, Air Force and Space Force — the latter half have previously announced major initiatives aimed at incorporating blockchain technology or otherwise adopting digital assets. In June 2021, Space Force said it would be releasing NFT versions of patches and coins designed for the launch of one of its vehicles. The U.S. Navy also inked a $1.5-million deal with Consensus Networks to develop a blockchain-enabled logistics system named HealthNet.