According to a recent report, the American multinational retail corporation that operates a chain of department stores, Walmart Inc., is seemingly prepping to enter the industry of non-fungible token (NFT) technology and metaverse concepts.
Walmart USPTO Trademark Filings Are Littered With Descriptions of NFTs, Blockchain Tech, Digital Collectibles, Metaverse, and Virtual Department Store Games
- On January 16, CNBC contributor Lauren Thomas published a report that says “Walmart is quietly preparing to enter the metaverse.” That’s according to seven filings stemming from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
- The trademark filings discuss cryptocurrency solutions, blockchain technology, and non-fungible token (NFT) assets. One specific filing describes downloadable software that can leverage digital currencies and concepts like augmented reality.
- In a statement sent to Thomas, Walmart told the reporter that the multinational retail corporation is “continuously exploring how emerging technologies may shape future shopping experiences.” However, Walmart declined to tell Thomas about the seven specific trademarks.
- “We are testing new ideas all the time,” a Walmart spokesperson said to the reporter. “Some ideas become products or services that make it to customers. And some we test, iterate, and learn from.”
- Another Walmart USPTO filing talks about a virtual reality (VR) game that features a virtual version of a Walmart store and a great number of goods the retail chain sells. The virtual items or NFTs could represent healthcare items, personal care products, patio furniture, electronics, appliances, apparel, and sporting goods.
- The filing follows Walmart a “digital currency and cryptocurrency product lead” in mid-August 2021. “As digital currency/ cryptocurrency lead at Walmart you will be responsible for developing the digital currency strategy and product roadmap,” the Walmart job listing said at the time.
- Walmart follows a myriad of retailers and well known brands trying to capitalize on metaverse concepts, NFT tech, and Web3. Companies that have jumped headfirst into the growing blockchain industry include Gap, , , Hennessy, Coca-Cola, and . ,
- The companies filed USPTO trademarks tied to digital collectibles and blockchain technology. , Urban Outfitters, Ralph Lauren, and Abercrombie & Fitch have also
- The seven trademarks are not the only trademarks and patents Walmart has filed that discuss blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies. In August 2019, it was that Walmart filed a patent that talks about the creation of a stablecoin concept.
- “The digital currency may be pegged to the U.S. dollar and available for use only at selected retailers or partners. In other embodiments, the digital currency is available for use anywhere. The digital currency can provide a fee-free, or fee-minimal place to store wealth that can be spent, for example, at retailers and, if needed, easily converted to cash,” Walmart’s 2019 filing explains.
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