May 3, 2018

Augmented reality and virtual reality are similar concepts with important differences. While AR involves superimposing imagery on the space a user is actually viewing, virtual reality simulates an entire world around the subject. Each of these may prove to be a promising new area of development for forward-looking companies.

The industries that have taken to these solutions so far cover a wide variety of subjects. AR is becoming a useful planning tool, as well as providing training advantages. Virtual reality has become a factor in entertainment and gaming and has moved into education, training operations and maintenance spaces.

So What?

AR and VR are shaking off early perceptions that they require extensive and expensive development, as well as specialized equipment. Executives who witnessed the large, attention-grabbing launch of the smartphone video game “Pokemon Go” quickly realized that today’s handheld devices give individuals AR-capable hardware in their pockets at all times. The potential for exciting new AR and VR applications has never been greater.
AR overlays, accessed on phones or smart glasses, can put notifications on the scenes workers are actually viewing, guiding them to safe and productive solutions to problems in progress. VR spaces can be used for collaboration on complex projects, and give users a wealth of easy-to-understand data. Industries from the energy production sector to hospital-based health care are taking notice.

Now What?

The next steps for AR and VR will likely take the form of four distinct advantages. Each of these advantages helps close a gap between company personnel and departments. First, the technologies will be able to simulate proximity and help people work together remotely. Second, they’ll deliver visually clear and stimulating insights. Third, AR and VR add a new depth to training methods. Finally, the solutions can create a feeling of engagement and togetherness.

Read our full Augmented & Virtual Reality Guide to learn how to bring these four capabilities to your company.