When Brain-Computer Interfaces Meet the Metaverse: Landscape, Demonstrator, Trends, Challenges, and Concerns

by   Sergio López Bernal, et al.

The metaverse has gained tremendous popularity in recent years, allowing the interconnection of users worldwide. However, current systems used in metaverse scenarios, such as virtual reality glasses, offer a partial immersive experience. In this context, Brain-Computer Interfaces (BCIs) can introduce a revolution in the metaverse, although a study of the applicability and implications of BCIs in these virtual scenarios is required. Based on the absence of literature, this work studies, for the first time, the applicability of BCIs in the metaverse, analyzing the current status of this integration based on different categories related to virtual worlds and the evolution of BCIs in these scenarios in the medium and long term. This work also presents a demonstration of what current BCI solutions can provide to the metaverse. It uses a metaverse consisting in driving a car within a simulation, using VR, a steering wheel and pedals, and a BCI for neural data acquisition. Four use cases are selected, focusing on cognitive and emotional assessment of the driver, detection of drowsiness, and driver authentication while using the vehicle. Then, it offers an analysis of BCI trends in the metaverse, also identifying future challenges that the intersection of these technologies will face. Finally, it reviews the concerns that the use of BCIs in virtual world applications could generate according to different categories: accessibility, user inclusion, privacy, cybersecurity, physical safety, and ethics.


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