1. Chemy JMHT's Avatar
    From gaming and entertainment to advertising and sales, to retail and manufacturing, AR made its mark and proved its business value


    Siemens uses an augmented reality app to enhance its brochures and marketing materials. Credit: Augment

    Over the past decade as virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) have matured, VR has overshadowed its cousin, AR. Media coverage and public interest favored VR, hailing it as the next big tech breakthrough.

    At the outset of 2016, the narrative looked no different: VR would continue to dominate. VR headsets such as the Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive were poised to hit the market in 2016. At the same time, the Samsung Gear VR made its public debut at the end of 2015 to make VR accessible through mobile. Despite these releases, the content, accessories and consumer readiness werent quite there. VRs move to the mainstream faltered this year, as it now sits in a holding pattern waiting for the other pieces to mature.

    On the other hand, AR exploded into the mainstream this year.

    In the digital era, AR serves as a nexus between the digital and physical worlds. AR overlays digital assets in the physical world. It enhances our perception of reality.

    From gaming and entertainment to advertising and sales, to retail and manufacturing, AR made its mark and proved its true business value.

    AR milestones from 2016

    Snapchat filters and lenses

    No, geofilters and lenses werent new to Snapchat in 2016. But the company made updates throughout the year to these features that broadened their capabilities and increased user engagement.

    Geofilters and lenses allow users to overlay a digital effect on their Snapchat photo or video before broadcasting to their network. These filters enhance the real world by combining digital and real elements, resulting in an augmented reality experience.

    In November, Snapchat released World Lenses. World Lenses allow users to apply different effects using the phones camera viewer. World Lenses represent a deeper commitment to AR. With World Lenses, users are not just overlaying a filter frame or enhancing their face with lenses, rather they can introduce digital elements such as butterflies and hearts anywhere in the scene. This new capability further blurs the line between the digital and physical.

    Even more, Snap Inc introduced fashionable AR glasses called Spectacles in November 2016. Although not marketed as AR eyewear, these glasses are at their essence an AR headset.

    Until Spectacles, companies have struggled with consumer adoption of AR or VR headsets (remember Google Glass). The success of Spectacles proves consumers are ready to adopt more intrusive AR hardware, and they hint at a grander AR vision in the future for Snap.

    Pokmon Go

    The colossal success of Pokmon Go catapulted AR into the mainstream consciousness this summer. The mobile game was downloaded 50 million times on Android in the first 19 days of its release. The next-fastest app to hit that record was ColorSwatch in 77 days.

    In the location-based mobile game, users must search about their real world to catch digital Pokmon through their device. For many, this was their first AR experience, priming them for more to come in 2017.

    Project Tango

    This fall, Lenovo shipped the first Tango-enabled smartphone, the Phab 2 Pro. Tango technology from Google introduces depth sensing, computer vision and room mapping to devices, which together enable for new and improved AR apps and utilities.

    Wayfair, an American furniture company, was one of the first big retailers to release a Tango-enabled app. With WayfairView, customers can try pieces of furniture in their home before buying. Tangos technology removes the need for markers or trackers, and it offers more stable AR viewing. Tangos technology provides a smooth end-to-end AR experience for the user.

    Whats up next for 2017?

    Lenovos Phab 2 Pro is just the start of Tango-enabled devices poised to hit the market in the coming months. As more Tango-enabled phones enter the market, more consumers will have access to the technology and these AR apps.

    Further, greater proliferation of these devices will encourage more developers to publish Tango-powered apps. We can expect more big-name retailers and brands to publish Tango appsapps that will change how we interact with the physical world by more seamlessly merging it with the digital.

    Even more, 2017 will attract more industry leaders into the AR market. It is rumored Samsung will showcase its AR tech at MWC 2017 in February. Samsung Electronics Vice President Sung-Hoon Hong said the company is developing a light field engine that can be used with its holograph technology.

    The details of the project are ambiguous, but the announcement suggests that AR will continue to trend in 2017. The introduction of more hardware and software solutions will fuel consumer and business adoption in the coming year.
    12-26-2016 07:45 AM
  2. pjs37's Avatar
    I think you will see this explode in stores and resale in the next year. There is a lot of value to be had in letting customers scan the box with their camera and seeing a virtual item to examine. Even being able to try clothing options on or place furniture in their house. Just more care and development needs to be placed into getting these objects in 3D so I thinkw e will see a lot of pushes in the 3D scanner realm to improve resolution of the 3D models.
    12-26-2016 10:22 AM
  3. Chemy JMHT's Avatar
    Amen!

    There is a lot of what you said in almost every AR "glasses" in research right now, I think it's a common way to monetize the application of that tech so is very popular.

    Also I imagine a Doctor watching a patient with all the medical history in front of him, even on ER rooms so less mistakes will be made, street police just watching cars will know if it's stolen or has pendind tickets
    12-26-2016 05:47 PM
  4. Chemy JMHT's Avatar
    AR provides business with unique opportunities. AR technologies are interesting for many large firms engaged in the production and sale of cars, clothes, furniture, etc. The augmented reality in the sphere of trade has great potential, since it can demonstrate to the buyer all the advantages of the proposed product. I am interested in the supplemented reality and like to read useful information, I recently found a good article about augmented reality for marketing
    Well I think what is holding back AR more than VR is the amount of data that need to be processed in order to have a good AR experience, while VR can recreate everything and doesn't need too many sensors and feedback from the surroundings to work.

    But let see, I think AR/MR will be the future and maybe not as far as we thought.
    05-13-2018 10:00 PM

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