Augmented Reality In Business: The Benefits And Applications

Augmented Reality in Business: The Benefits and Applications

Augmented Reality In Business, These are all possible scenarios, Now imagine you can do it from the comfort of your own home without having to visit any of those places.

You are shopping for a shirt and trying on a couple to decide which one suits you better. Or taking a tour of an apartment in Porto you want to rent this summer. Or what if you are in the market for a new coffee table and instead of flipping through pictures in magazines, you want to see how it looks in your living room.

What’s the catch? AR and VR applications. Today we take a close-up look at the prospects of Augmented Reality in business, its benefits, and ideas for application. Augmented Reality In Business

The sibling technologies, Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) are some of the technology trends that are on everyone’s lips this year. Augmented Reality In Business From the Olympics Opening Ceremony to Consumers Electronics Show (CES) last month in Las Vegas where tech giants like Facebook, Google, Lenovo, HTC presented their gears. Predictably, Amazon intends to join the game and is rumored to explore AR, and Samsung has products in the works as well.

The Power of Augmented Reality in Business

AR and VR blend the lines between the physical and digital world. They offer a new way of interacting with customers, colleagues, and the world around us. Often referred to as sister technologies AR/VR have an enormous market potential that is only in the initial stages of unlocking.

Augmented Reality vs. Virtual Reality

Augmented Reality In Business, Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) are presented via 3D high definition video and audio. Both technologies stem from the same idea of immersing users into a digital environment. But while VR is completely immersive, AR only partly overlays virtual objects over the real world. It uses everyday devices, a smartphone or a tablet, and sensors and market to detect the position of physical objects and then determine where to put virtual ones.

Although the augmented reality is still in its infancy, it has been around for a while now. A Survey of Augmented Reality by Ronald T. Azuma that dates back to 1997 goes into full detail about the possible applications of AR. The author detected at least six classes of potential use: medical visualization, maintenance and repair, annotation, robot path planning, entertainment, and military aircraft navigation and targeting.

Twenty-something years later and tech moguls are all in a race to present the best possible AR experience. And while it’s a long way to go until AR and VR rise to their full potential, current technologies give businesses a lot of opportunities to benefit from.

Benefits of Augmented Reality

Augmented Reality In Business, Though not in its full bloom, augmented reality has a lot to offer. Due to its features, AR in business is considered to be more appealing to the market than virtual reality.

According to Digi-Capital’s recent report, AR applications can reach 3,5 billion installed base and up to $85-90 billion within 5 years. Meanwhile, VR’s numbers are 50-60 million installed base and $10-15 billion.

The reason why Augmented Reality in business is much more successful is because of its ubiquity, while VR is more focused. VR’s main forte is in the fact that it completely immerses a user into virtual reality which makes it an excellent tool for gaming or 3D films. According to the report, Augmenter Reality in business can address the market of smartphones and tablets as they both cannibalize and grow it. The possibilities and fields of augmented reality apps for business are great.

“This is only the beginning of augmented reality applications. Here at Perfectial, we are actively involved in studying and implementing the technology. By using augmented reality we were able to contribute to business applications of ARKit and create a couple of concepts.” says Dmytro Skorokhod, iOS developer, and ARKit expert.

Augmented Reality in Business Uses

Augmented Reality In Business, Like the heads-up displays seen everywhere in science fiction, augmented reality is any technology that allows its users to see digital information projected onto the real world. That’s where AR differentiates itself from virtual reality (VR): AR doesn’t block out the real world or replace it with a completely digital one–it lets the real world show through, only with digital objects or information on top of it.

There are plenty of well-known examples of AR in the real world. Games like Pokemon Go project digital critters onto the world around them; Google Maps has added AR features that show directions on the real world; and other smartphone apps have made novel use of AR through embedded cameras. 

Augmented Reality In Business, Advanced hardware, like Microsoft HoloLens or Google Glass, make AR far more practical than smartphone apps: They provide immersive, hands-free AR that can be used for a variety of business, commercial, and educational uses.

What is augmented reality?

Augmented reality is still new, and many of its uses have yet to be discovered. Right now the sky’s the limit for AR: There are countless ways in which digital information overlaid on the real world could be practical and lucrative.

Slowly but surely, augmented reality is changing the shape of commerce. Tractica made a prognosis that by 2019 an installed base of actively used augmented reality apps will grow to more than 2.2 billion apps.

Augmented reality can be applied to various industries. One of the most interesting cases come from the following:

From the high-tech, information-laden sight of The Terminator to Ironman’s augmented view of the world from inside his suit, digital information overlaid on the real world is a long-established trope in the world of science fiction. We don’t need to wait for movies or video games to give us an augmented view of reality anymore–modern computing hardware is more than capable of replicating the high-tech worlds of fiction. 

Augmented reality (AR) can be used with devices as simple as a camera-enabled smartphone or with advanced hardware like Microsoft HoloLens. AR is likely to change the way we interact with computers in the near future, and in many ways it already has. Find out how, and why, augmented reality matters to modern businesses.

Ways businesses Can use augmented reality?

Augmented Reality In Business, The AR market is predicted to be worth $60.55 billion USD by 2023, and it’s likely to be led by some of the biggest names in tech: Google, Samsung, HTC, and Microsoft. 

Companies that want to stay on the cutting edge should, at the very least, consider where augmented reality could fit in their organizations. It’s not going away anytime soon, and if the predictions are correct, it’s only going to be more important as time goes on. 

There are two main areas that businesses should think about when deciding if AR is for them: Its potential for internal use to help workers and its commercial applicability for consumers. Augmented Reality In Business.

A warehousing company, for example, may not have much need for a smartphone app, but a heads-up display for forklift operators or other warehouse workers could eliminate time spent looking for stock and reduce accident risks. Augmented Reality In Business.

If that same warehouse is stocked full of home furnishings and decor, the leaders at that company may want to think about a second application for AR: Smartphone apps that allow customers to see what their purchase would look like at home before they buy it. Furniture company IKEA has already lept on that AR applications: Its IKEA Place app has been very popular. Augmented Reality In Business.

ways that companies might use augmented reality. 

Remote support: 

AR apps that allow technicians and users to communicate with experts in real time have been on the rise. In some cases these apps allow tech support to highlight objects in the user’s field of view so they can assist in repair without ever having to leave their seats. AR headsets connect to Internet of Things (IoT) sensors and other diagnostic information to help technicians assess repair needs more quickly and reduce downtime. The HoloLens even comes with a built-in remote assist app.

Augmented Reality In Business

Training and education

The educational applications of AR are well known, and they can be experienced by users with hardware as simple as a smartphone. There are also advanced AR education apps for augmented reality headsets like the HoloLens that can go further in-depth and provide an even better educational experience. Seeing 3D representations of objects, zooming in and getting an exploded view, and seeing complex machines working from the inside are all ways in which AR can be used in the educational realm. AR can also be used for virtual collaboration, making it easier for students and teachers working separately to solve problems together. 

3D modeling: 

Whether building a house or designing a new car, AR can be used to aid in the modeling and design process. Apps exist that can import and display CAD files in real space, see 3D models of houses, and more. 

Training: 

New employees often need time to learn how systems work, but they don’t necessarily need to do it in the real world. AR training apps are already being used by companies like Walmart, Verizon, Honeywell, and Chipotle. By giving employees access to virtual training, they’re allowed to make mistakes in a virtual environment without real-world consequences.  

Keeping customers in a store: 

AR apps can help keep customers around. Businesses have been finding ways to make money off of AR since Pokemon Go came out in 2016: People may not be at your store to shop, but games can keep them hanging around, which could lead to a sale. Cosmetics company Sephora has been at the cutting edge of customer-focused AR as well: It has a mobile app for virtually trying on makeup and in-store AR kiosks that keep people shopping.

This is hardly an exhaustive list of the business uses for AR, and as time goes on those uses will probably evolve into realms we haven’t thought of yet. Regardless of the type of business you’re in, there’s probably an AR use case–it’s just up to you and your development team to figure out what that is. 

The technology needed to use augmented reality!

Augmented Reality In Business, It might seem daunting to start using AR in your organization. The most business-practical applications of augmented reality seem to require some extensive hardware, and internal use apps would require a lot of development before being usable. 

That doesn’t mean AR is out of reach for the average business, nor does it mean that expensive hardware like the HoloLens is required for making it a business tool. 

Using augmented reality is as simple as having a camera-enabled smartphone, and many AR apps for mobile devices have business applications or could be used in a business role.

Augmented Reality In Business, Take for example the built-in iOS app Measure. It uses a device’s camera and spatial awareness to determine the size of objects, measure rooms, and act as a level. This can have a lot of business uses for professionals who need to measure spaces (e.g., IT pros setting up a new server rack). 

Simple apps like Measure are just a taste of practical uses for augmented reality. Other AR apps that could be used by businesses and their employees include Google Translate, which will auto-translate text captured by a device’s camera; Google Lens, which displays information about any object the camera sees; Google’s Just a Line, which allows users to draw in 3D space and lets others view the drawings in real-time (great for supporting computer users); and more. 

With the right team and the right goals, even small businesses could use AR apps–and we haven’t even touched on the external uses of AR for things like customer engagement, product trials, and other user-centered AR powered by smartphones.

Yes, if you want to use augmented reality to its fullest potential as an internal tool, you’ll need advanced hardware that can be operated hands-free and is designed for business AR uses. That doesn’t mean small businesses or those who don’t need HoloLens-style AR are out of the loop: It’s all about finding the right tools that can work to fulfill your business needs on your budget. 

When thinking about AR platforms, it’s important to distinguish between AR development kits and programming languages most often used for developing AR software. 

AR development kits include software such as Apple’s ARKit, Reality Composer, and RealityKit; Google’s ARCore, and other dev kits designed specifically for AR on consumer-grade hardware that most users are likely to have, like a smartphone. 

Other AR tools, like Microsoft’s HoloLens, rely less on self-contained development kits and more on general Windows development skills. Hardware like the HoloLens has a lot more functionality, and as such developing apps for it is more complicated. Microsoft calls its HoloLens AR “mixed reality,” and developing for it uses the same SDK programmers use for other Windows software projects.

Regardless of the type of AR you plan to develop, there is one thing for sure: You need skilled programmers. Even self-contained kits like ARKit and ARCore require programming with popular languages.

How can my business start using augmented reality?

If you’ve identified a way in which AR can benefit your company, you completed an important step. 

The next hurdle to jump is to figure out what the best approach is: Should you go with hardware like the HoloLens or Google Glass, or is it better to stick with a more affordable option like smartphone-powered AR?

Once you know what kind of AR hardware you’ll need, you have to pick a platform. If you’re going with mobile devices, there’s a choice between Apple and Google, so choose which is most likely to appeal to customers or employees.

For those investing in AR hardware, there are several products to choose from: The Microsoft HoloLens, Google Glass, and Magic Leap among them. Before deciding which AR headset to invest in, be sure to weigh the costs, features, development kits, and other features to determine which is best for your needs. 

You’ll also need skilled developers who can build your AR apps, whether it’s for smartphones or headsets. Picking which platform and/or hardware to go with can be determined in large part by the skills of the people on your developer team, so be sure to consult them when considering an AR project

development kits

  • RetailIn retail augmented reality has myriads of opportunities. Augmented Reality In Business Essentially you need to decide whether it will be an in-store or out-of-store experience. The first means that customers will interact with AR within the walls of the store. This could be virtual fitting rooms to help customers decide on the size or color of a product. Out-of-store experience means that your customers don’t have to leave their homes to have an experience. Like Converse The Sampler app that allows customers try on a pair of sneakers virtually to pick a favorite model. EBay Inc. recently announced that it’s working on AR kit to make shopping more fun and efficient. It will, for instance, allow sellers to select the right size of the box for a product by overlaying an image of a box over merchandise.
  • Real Estate Since the Internet is a number one place where buyers and renters look for new homes, Augmented Reality in business has a lot to offer for real estate. It can help customers experience homes differently, filter the ones they like and don’t like, and save some time both for clients and realtors. It is a great tool for construction workers as well. They bring the blueprints and images to life for clients to see how their prospective new home might look.
  • Interior DesignAR empowered interior design applications are here to help make the right decision about the size and style of a new piece of furniture. One of the most popular examples comes from a Swedish retail giant IKEA and its IKEA Place AR app. It makes buying decisions easier by enabling to “try on” their pieces in your room, take photos and videos of the result. It is so precise that you can even see the texture of the furniture.
  • Tourism and Maps For tourism, AR has a lot in store as well. Museums that allow more in-depth information about the exhibits or even by overlaying your phone over a skeleton being able to see how a creature looked like. China is among the countries that grasped AR opportunities to create engaging shows and draw tourists. Street signs, road maps that help navigate and explore cities, hotel room tours – the sky’s the limit here. Augmented Reality In Business
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