Innovation is an agent of change, it can create and destroy value, jobs, and progress. In the pursuit of it, resources can be gained and lost. One of the key technologies creating disruption is Augmented Reality.
Augmented reality integrates digital information into the user’s environment in real-time. AR creates a totally artificial environment where users experience a real-world environment with generated perpetual information overlaid on top of it.
AR delivers visual elements, sound, and other sensory information to the user through a device like a smartphone or glasses. This information is overlaid onto the device to create an interwoven experience where digital information alters the user’s perception of the real world. The overlaid information can be added to an environment or mask part of the natural environment.
AR Industry Market Size and Dynamics
AR has come from leaps and bounds to what it is today. More industries are racing around the clock to adopt AR in its applications. From AR viewers and visualizers on e-commerce stores to AR now becoming a key assistant to personal fitness, health, nutrition, and many others.
In its effort to make Metaverse the next big thing in tech, Facebook’s parent company, Meta, recently unveiled a new virtual and mixed-reality headset. Starting at $499.99, the Quest 3 is much more affordable than the Quest Pro. It llaunched in the fall of 2022, it offers performance far superior to its predecessor, the Meta Quest 2.
Projected Growth: Envisioning the Future of AR
According to statistics from Statista market outlook – (https://www.statista.com/outlook/amo/ar-vr/worldwide), revenue in AR and VR is expected to reach US$31.1bn by the end of 2023. Revenue is expected to show an annual growth rate (CAGR 2023-2027) of 13.72%, resulting in a projected market volume of US$52.0bn by 2027.
By the end of 2023, user penetration will be nearly 30%, expected to rise to 33% by the end of 2027. The average revenue per user (ARPU) is expected to be US$14.1. By the end of 2023, estimates are that nearly 100m people will be using VR or AR hardware.
There has been massive support from major technological giants in the role of AR’s popularization. Apple and Google introduced developer toolkits that allow programmers to easily create Augmented Reality apps (Apple’s ARKit and Google’s ARCore).
Innovations Driving the AR Revolution
Innovative technologies transform science fiction into reality, and AR is without a doubt one of them. Holograms, like in the Star Wars and the Marvel movies, now surround us in the real world, bringing a new immersive experience, and it’s more than just entertainment. Today, augmented reality is an effective business tool.
Here are some of the top augmented reality trends to keep a watch.
1. Leaps into Metaverse
One of the goals of using metaverse for business development is to strike down the barriers between the digital and physical worlds. Since augmented reality can display virtual objects embedded in our real world, various opportunities emerge for businesses and consumers alike.
2. Augmented Reality meets Artificial intelligence.
There are two ways in which artificial reality blends with augmented reality. First, AI powers facial and spatial recognition software for AR to function. Second, AR and AI solutions work together to provide innovative solutions.
3. Mobile augmented reality continues to evolve.
One of the main aims of AR is to deliver experiences across mobile devices. Businesses are now finding different opportunities to leverage mobile devices for AR. Improvements in this technology are being fueled by geospatial API, ARKit 6, and ARCore enhancements, among others.
4. Web AR Improvements.
Another important trend in augmented reality is Web AR. Because it is powered by web browsers, Web AR doesn’t require users to download any additional software. This alone creates the best case for accessibility.
Web AR also comes in handy for simple experiences such as adding filters to faces, coloring objects, and replacing backgrounds, among others.
5. AR Glasses Delivery
There has been a lot of debate on the application and usability of AR glasses. For every year that passes, it seems AR glasses use cases continue to rise. Take a look at Meta’s mixed-reality headset – Cambria. It is a new product line that is separate from Meta Quest 2.
Cambria headsets seem to be geared towards a massive adoption. Cambria isn’t the magic bullet everyone was hoping for. However, it may be a step in the right direction.
Another important thing to watch out for is the evolution of Apple’s LiDAR scanner. Apple is one of the top companies predicted to introduce a consumer-focused AR headset or glasses.
In addition to AR glasses, even more innovative devices promise to take a prominent place among the augmented reality future trends.
The Future of AR Technology
Augmented reality (AR) has seen a rise in public and corporate interest in recent years, and with Apple’s announcement of the Vision Pro headset, augmented reality print media, and brands and musicians experimenting with augmented reality music festivals and concerts. It is an exciting time to study the technology.
The question on many people’s minds is if AR is the computing platform of tomorrow or if it is a fad. However, this uncertainty is generally the case for emerging technologies, and challenges exist with adoption for them to go from interest to value creation.
AR technology continues to grow as the popularity and familiarization of apps and games like Pokemon Go or retail store AR apps increase. The expansion of 5G networks may make it easier to support cloud-based augmented reality experiences.
Apple constantly develops and updates its open-source mobile augmented reality development toolset – ARKit. Companies such as Target and Ikea use these toolsets in their flagship AR shopping apps. ARKit enables users to render AR in a 4K high dynamic range. Android equivalent development kit – ARCore continues to grow and improve.
Modern advances under development, such as Google’s smart glasses, can now translate audio into text and are poised to revolutionize how people speak different languages. Because of the immersive technology AR uses, more opportunities and experiences are poised to emerge.
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