Augmented Reality: Much more than catching Pokemon

Rui Rodrigues
Nov 29, 2017 · 3 min read

AR will fundamentally disrupt company processes and decision-making.

By now, you should have experienced Augmented Reality (AR) already — even if you did not know exactly what it was back then. If, for instance, you played Pokemon Go during those frenetic first months after its launch or used Snapchat to summon a dancing hotdog on your table, chances are you are already part of it.

But AR is much more than that — and businesses can greatly benefit from it.

NOW IS THE TIME FOR AUGMENTED REALITY

In fact, the technology existed for decades, but only now we have the process power to truly unleash its potential. AR allows a device to cross reality with digital information, which has a vast number of benefits for users.

Think about the last time you used a GPS. Did you ever commit the mistake of turning at the wrong road? That probably happened because you had to mentally transpose the GPS images onto the road ahead of you. Now, with AR, machines are able to directly put that information for you in the real world, facilitating and decreasing the time you need to make decisions.

Source: Harvard Business Review, November-December 2017

EVERY COMPANY SHOULD HAVE AN AR STRATEGY

At a company level, the benefits are equally impressive. Engineers are finally able to project their 3-D models into the real world, at a real scale, without the restrictions of viewing them on a 2-D computer screen — allowing them to walk around the product, peer under and over it, and even go inside. Bottlenecks can be more efficiently seen in the manufacturing process, as diagnostics and instructions get more intuitive. Marketing and the customer experience are also being impacted, as showrooms and product demonstration radically change — IKEA, for instance, just created a mobile app which lets you try furniture at home before buying it. AR can even facilitate the role of human resources, offering new and more innovative ways of training employees.

Given all this potential, why are we not seeing a mass adoption of AR already? The answer is content.

Source: AR/VR Industry Survey Report by PerkinsCoie September 2016

VR FIRST: DEMOCRATIZING AR

PerkinsCoie conducted last year a survey among 650 industry executives, to understand what is the biggest challenge facing the AR&VR industry right now, and more than 37% answered the inadequate content offerings, due to a low number of expert developers.

This poses a challenge. A strong network must be established between hardware manufacturers and developers, in order for the technology to take over. That is where organizations like VR First come in.

VR First lab at Bahçeşehir University (Turkey)

VR First aims at democratizing AR and Virtual Reality (VR) by establishing a platform which empowers schools and companies to develop software. By working alongside partners such as Oculus, HTC, Intel or Leapmotion, VR First is able to offer the hardware necessary for the development and establish labs at a worldwide scale. At the moment, the company already accomplished 50 labs within universities all over the world and counts with thousands of developers.

However, the goals of VR First go even further. The company wants to offer mentorship and training to individuals and institutions, so that they can make use of all the potential of not just AR, but also VR.

It is an exciting time for building experiences in Augmented Reality. More than catching Pokemons and using Snapchat filters, the technology will fundamentally disrupt company processes.

Is your company ready for it?

VR First

News and stories from the enablers of the immersive future.

Rui Rodrigues

Written by

VR First

VR First

News and stories from the enablers of the immersive future.

Welcome to a place where words matter. On Medium, smart voices and original ideas take center stage - with no ads in sight. Watch
Follow all the topics you care about, and we’ll deliver the best stories for you to your homepage and inbox. Explore
Get unlimited access to the best stories on Medium — and support writers while you’re at it. Just $5/month. Upgrade