The year 2020 has been unforgettable for all of us. While most of the industries faced severe crises, augmented reality and virtual reality technologies were seen booming even during the pandemic. With “try-before-you-buy” shopping experience, the COVID-19 has accelerated and redefined the retail sector as more people are shifting to digital shopping platforms. Plus, businesses have also increasingly started to adopt AR-VR solutions to better collaborate with their remote employees. Other sectors like home entertainment, edutech are also making use of Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality. Overall, the year 2021 looks promising for AR and VR.
In this article, we have curated the top trends of VR and AR that will shake up this year:
More of VR-AR in Entertainment
The Media and Entertainment industry is among the hardest hit by the COVID crisis. AR and VR will be a boost for event organizers to attract more visitors and participants to their music concerts, sports, museums, theatres, amusement parks, and what not. For example, virtual reality can help broadcast live sport events in a 360-degree format providing an immersive experience to fans; fans can get significant real-time info like weather parameters, players’ background, etc through AR.
Home entertainment is another area in which the technologies will have a higher impact. Imagine how nice it would be if your favourite movie characters feature in your living room or you get a closer viewing experience of your favourite tv show or movie. With studies estimating the global AR and VR market to grow at a CAGR of over 35% during 2020-2024, we can’t wait to see some innovative entertainment products!
Integration with 5G network
Super fast mobile networks that could transfer up to 3 gigabits per second as against the average home broadband that delivers under 100 megabits per second, offers a better VR and AR experience. By combining with 5G, AR and VR designers can offer experiences in low-powered environments in low bandwidth, thus resulting in cheaper devices and headsets and more realistic VR simulations.
AR Avatars will be our immersive guides
Avatars will be our vehicles for entering the immersive worlds. What if your favourite characters from books, movies, comics, or even toys come up alive? Or joined by musicians, athletes or other celebrities? How fun it is to interact with unique avatars from all around our common places like groceries, banks, retailers, etc. the world will become increasingly intelligent and useful.
For example, a popular global apparel and footwear corporation, in one of their retail spaces innovated with avatar-based virtual mannequins which showcase various seasonal looks in 3D. Or just imagine a Mickey Mouse avatar appearing as an app over 5G guiding you through the park, making lunch reservations and entertaining you.
AR Cloud will drive the next gen immersive experience
AR Cloud could be said as the digital version of the Earth. AR Cloud provides us with information and services on all physical aspects surrounding us. To understand better, just imagine a scenario where you are visiting a country as a foreigner. Due to sudden change in weather conditions you are in need of a jacket. You put on the AR glasses and look around to find a nearest apparel store. Once you enter the store, the cloud could show if the desired size and colour of the jacket are available. Your shopping will be done in just a few minutes!
Instead of scrolling through endless search engine pages, AR cloud creates an immersive experience by combining the digital and physical world overlaid onto people, objects and locations.
AR-VR for remote working
As companies across the globe continue to work from home, remote working is now the hot topic, the new norm. Augmented reality in business can help engage with employees in everyday activities, speed up the on-boarding process, facilitate training, collaborate with co-workers in the physical space, and more.
For example AR-VR tools help employees connect with technicians on remote, increasing first-time fix rates, reducing downtime and travel costs, and increasing productivity.
Interestingly, studies conclude a 204% growth in meeting participants among clients and a 242% growth in the number of meetings, and 75% of clients feel they can work efficiently and achieve their goals through VR.
Augmented Reality solutions in the edutech are already witnessing increased demands as more institutions are finding e-learning innovative ways to engage children. AR offers students real-life scenarios for understanding different situations. They get to experience different places and time settings in their classrooms, rather than just understanding through pictures and explanations. VR creates an interactive environment which helps students understand complex concepts in a simple manner.
Well, we can experience more of such new innovations in AR and VR trends in the coming years.