AR is like...

A box of chocolates…

Picture Courtesy: PokemonGo.com

AR scenes are exciting. Pokemon Go was a huge hit and it got people walking around and losing some weight. More than that, it was the first time many of us were introduced to AR. Pokemon Go brought catching Pokemon in the wild bushes, an activity every Pokemon player is accustomed to, to the real world making the activity more immersive, fun and real. AR added unique value as it brought to life an in-game activity that mimicked a real life scene of hunting/catching wild animals/bugs. That was just the beginning. AR scenes are all set to explode. Many startups such as Mira who are building low cost AR headsets along with Apple’s AR software that will hit all iPhone sets soon are setting the stage for AR to become mainstream. I see two types of AR ideas (very broad categorization) gaining momentum. One in which AR adds unique value and a second in which AR makes it more immersive and fun.

When I say unique value, I mean to say that AR helps achieve something that other technologies cannot. For instance, no other format (even VR) could not have brought Pokemon to the real world the way AR did. Similarly, no other format can help you in furniture shopping the way AR does. In both these cases, AR adds unique value. If you are thinking of identifying areas where AR will add unique value, think about real life situations/activities that are mimicked online or on your phone or in a game. Counter Strike or any shooting game for that matter is a classic example. Imagine walking around with your AR headset and you have zombies or enemies jumping at you from out of nowhere. Imagine playing that with your friends. Another example could be AR in architecture and interior designing. Would it not be useful to present clients with small prototypes of the building in the AR format?

The second type is one in which AR adds value in that it would make an activity more fun and immersive. For example, all board games can be converted into the AR format. Imagine playing chess where the queen and bishop take real forms and can do cool things when they take out the opponent’s pieces. Another example could be using AR to empower coaches across sports (football, soccer, cricket) to analyze and communicate game strategy. Yet another example would be to transform fables and short stories into the AR format. Imagine the fun experience you can present to kids when you bring their favorite stories and characters to life in their bedrooms.

In short, AR is shaping up to be a box of chocolates, you never know what you are gonna get!

*Note: if you are a developer and want to brainstorm new AR ideas, feel free to get in touch with me at anirudhkishenvm@gmail.com