Augmented reality is a term often bundled together with virtual reality. But unlike VR, which completely immerses the users into a computer-generated interactive world, augmented reality or AR superimposes digital content onto the real world. This enhanced version of reality can Why Augmented Reality is the Next Big Thing or by using a mobile or a tablet device.
Apple just made a major AR push
Apple has made some pretty big announcements last week during the Worldwide Developers Conference. This includes various hardware updates, as well as new versions of both iOS and watchOS.
Apple has announced a new developer framework called ARKit, which allows developers to create augmented reality apps for iPad and iPhone. Tim Cook has already stated that AR is the next big thing and has even compared it to the advent of smartphones.
It’s not just Apple who’s shown interest in AR
Apple is not the first company to talk about AR. Microsoft has already released its own AR headset called HoloLens. Although it offers an amazing experience regarding the augmented reality, the HoloLens costs $3,000, and as such, is hardly a product aimed at the average consumer.
The AR/VR scene is blowing up quickly
Setting aside the tech giants and their massive budgets, there are already a couple of small companies who are working on various AR/VR related products. We currently have hand tracking startups including Leap Motion, Manus, and Magic Leap, as well as virtual reality treadmills, such as the one made by Virtuix Omni. Not to mention Meta, an AR startup which is going head to head with Microsoft in order to provide the massive market with consumer grade AR headsets.
The possibilities are virtually endless
Augmented reality has enormous potential for industrial, medicinal and military application. Industrial designers could use AR to compare their digital mockups with the physical ones and check for any discrepancies.
AR has an incredibly large market potential
This technology has already been implemented by various brands to showcase new products and provide their customers with a completely new way of experiencing and using their services. This includes games such as Pokémon GO, but also apps with more practical use, such as Google Translate and Wikitude.
Augmented reality shows a lot of potentials and although there are currently only a handful of available apps, it safe to say that this is just the beginning of a larger phenomenon that will certainly take over the entire globe. Current AR and VR devices are fairly expensive for the average consumer, but this is all about to change with Apple’s move to push AR onto hundreds of millions of devices already in the hands of customers.
| About the Guest Author:
Nate Vickery is a business technology expert and an online author focused on latest technology trends and startups. He is the editor on Bizzmarkblog.com and a writer for many top-tier online publications, such as The Next Web and Tech In Asia.