AR Technology Trends
Augmented reality (AR) technology is rising at an exceptionally high rate due to its widespread use by market leaders including Microsoft, Google, Apple, Amazon, and Facebook. It was estimated that AR active devices will rise to 598 million units by the end of 2020, and the anticipated growth is 1.73 billion by 2024. The future of augmented reality is vivid, let’s dive into it!
What are the top AR technology trends to see in 2021?
- Use of AR for navigation: AR for indoor navigation is now more effective due to more bandwidth and an efficient interior environment. Moreover, the tools including Bluetooth beacons, QR codes, Wi-Fi RF patterns, and ceiling antennas are enhancing experience to the next level.
Apple’s ARKit 4.0, which is the latest version of its open-source augmented reality development tools and Google’s ARCore technology-based applications, is just great for consumers to find their way through airports, shopping malls, and other locations. With in-store navigation AR technology, customers can find out the exact things they are looking for while shopping in-person.
Google’s AR Live View experience for walking directions is also enhancing with new features. For outdoor AR navigation, ARKit 4 has introduced Geo Tracking that ensures the best positioning with street view.
- AR in shopping and retail: A virtual option to shop provided by retailers such as American Apparel, Uniqlo, and Sephora or even a virtual fitting room is allowing customers to experience a try-before-you-buy from their home itself. Especially, in this COVID-19 pandemic situation, AR is getting more popular among the customers.In addition to apparels, AR technology is also helpful in buying furniture for your home with an enhanced experience. For example, with IKEA’s app, customers can see how the furniture or other products can look in their own homes.AR is more appealing for customers as it offers the convenience, advantages, precision, accuracy, and ability to approximate to the real world. Growing acceptance of virtual fitting room technology suggests that AR is here to stay for years to come and is expected to hit $10 billion by 2027.
- Mobile AR: Apple’s ARKit 4 and Google’s AR Core are the best examples to mention here. AR market is growing exponentially due to these tools, greater app support, and AR-capable devices. ARKit 4 offers advancements such as a new depth API, location anchors, and improved face tracking. Whereas, ARCore is innovating with the launch of publicly made Street View photos. However, ARCore falls behind ARKit in terms of simultaneous use of front and back cameras, motion capture, and tracking multiple faces.
- AR and AI together for better solutions: Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) can perk up augmented reality (AR) experiences drastically. For example, automatic suggestions can be given using an AR experience on a shopper’s smartphone who is physically at a store. AI-Chatbot development convey these suggestions using natural language processing (NLP) technologies.By using AR and AI together, computers can interact on their own e.g. Instagram users can have filters on the app provided or Facebook users get better facial recognition for tagging photographs. Also, AR-driven virtual fitting room technology is supported by AI. It analyzes user’s facial features and contours, and the rest of their body if required.
- Portable AR: For viewing virtual objects through a smartphone’s camera would be greatly superior to the AR experience through a headset rather than holding up a cell phone, isn’t it? Gradual progress is taking place for treating AR headsets as ‘wearable’ technology like that of smartwatches and earbuds. Headsets like Microsoft’s HoloLens and the Varjo XR-1 are the examples that can be given here, although they are far too bulky and expensive. As AR headsets get comfortable, inexpensive, and socially accepted, AR’s significance and demand will get higher.AR glasses that would be more practical for a consumer to use are also in the development phase. Apple Glass is supposed to be a consumer-focused AR glasses project that may be here in the next few years. According to ARtillery Intelligence, the market is expected to grow from $822 million to $13.4 billion by 2024 for this technology. Once the AR glasses have a major stake in the market, it will be a major driver of the industry.
- AR events: AR will also play a great role in executing in-person and virtual events like career fairs and sports events with the help of dedicated apps or WebAR solutions. This offers a unique experience to attendees during pandemic situations.Aircards developed the Pot Noodle Virtual Careers Fair in collaboration with GradBay. It was an AR-Powered career fair that produced an immersive experience for participants. Just by pointing the smartphone at a large, outdoor, and flat space, users could see the videos on displays on the virtual tables. Due to WebAR, there was no need for app downloads for functions to take place. Though this largest platform is in the early stage of development, brands are going for it due to its powerful shifts and it has around 3.04 billion compatible devices.Additionally, companies like 8th Wall are using WebAR in the sports industry. Here, QR codes can improve marketing strategies through interactive AR content, or holograms of sports players can be produced for interaction with consumers in their own homes.Major League Baseball is trying to relate its innovative Hawk-Eye baseball tracking and analytics data to AR experiences. With the specific data about the locations of players and the ball on the field during a match, AR delivery in a virtual space can be achieved with more correctness and practicality. Probably the data from other sports including American football, soccer, and golf, etc. can be used with this same strategy to give AR experiences to fans.
Besides, LiDAR technology, AR in Automotive Industry, AR in remote education, AR in real estate, AR in healthcare, and more are some other fields where AR will evolve at a higher rate in the coming years.
It is estimated that AR’s value in the market will reach $25 billion by 2025 and hence the augmented reality has an intense future and its growth will continue for years to come.
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