The augmented reality market size is expected to reach $1 billion by 2018. Rapid growth is being seen in this market and virtual reality is expected to compose nearly 40% of the total AR market in the future. We’ve often thought of augmented reality as a place to play games or have a second life that allows us to escape reality, but the practical applications of this technology are much more than just a gamer’s paradise.
Education, commerce, and even healthcare are all looking at augmented reality as a possibility to expand services. As the world grows smaller as the database of information grows larger, AR/VR looks to be the next step in how we share data, interact with each other, and yes – have some fun when we’ve got some down time.
How Influential Will Augmented Reality Really Become?
The world has actually been using some form of augmented reality since 1975. It’s a technology that has been around in some form since the Great Depression. The first applications of AR were for weather reports and from there, the world has shifted towards every other industry to see if there would be applications. Even the Denzel Washington movie Virtuosity examined what a world of augmented reality could be like if it was able to interact with the real world.
Modern augmented reality is allowing people to see more information based on what is actually seen in real life. A number of apps have been introduced which can provide more specific data to users based on what their needs happen to be. Here are just a few highlights of some apps that have taken modern AR into the palm of your hand.
- SpyGlass. This app will turn your iPhone into a spyglass that is similar to what science fiction shows have offered as a future sight technology. It takes the image your iPhone sees, lets you get your overall bearing, gives you GPS information, and even measures the angle of elevation or the horizon angle for you.
- Golfscape.This app isn’t 100% AR, but it will give you the extra data you need to make your golf game more complete. It has over 35,000 different golf courses programmed into it that will give golfers precise measurements about the hole they are on, the distance to the green from each bunker, and incorporates multiple green measurements.
- DanKam. Imagine what the world looks like to those who are color blind. The most common blindness is in the red-green spectrum, but all colors can be affected. This interesting app could help people identify a color blindness issue without a costly visit to the eye doctor while enhancing personal while filtering out the colors that are outside of a color blind spectrum to make images more realistic.
As you can see, the AR industry is on the verge of some great things. Just ask Facebook: they paid $2 billion to get involved in it with their purchase of Oculus.
What Is the Future of Augmented Reality Going to Be Like?
The biggest gains that we’re going to see with the AR industry share is going to come with its installation into automobiles. We often talk about Google’s driverless vehicles, but image having a full HUD like a pilot which can help you stay centered in your lane, give you relevant data about the weather outside including weather warnings, or distance and speed data and how that could change the driving experience. By 2020, it is estimated that advanced AR technology is going to be found in over 100 million automobiles.
The University of Washington has always come up with contact lens technology that provides an augmented reality. The US military plans to test this technology within the next 2 years and if found to be successful, will transition into the general public and provide people with a whole range of data. You could look at someone and see their pulse rate and blood pressure. You could look at a city sign and know how far it is to get to your destination. The applications for AR/VR are virtually limitless.
We’re also seeing some of that future right now. AR applications in medical schools are allowing students to be able to practice their skills in controlled environments without the same levels of patient risk as in the past. Added visualizations increase sensory perception and ultimate enhance the care a surgeon can give while also improving their skill set.
Only 11% of students so far have used an augmented reality app so far. Many people don’t even know that they exist. As this changes, the market share is going to expand infinitesimally. Now is the time to get involved.
What Are the Facts About the AR Market Size?
Augmented reality provides people with a better explanation of the world around them. This means that the applications for this technology can be applied everywhere. When you see the first down line on a televised NFL broadcast, you’re seeing a form of augmented reality. The compound annual growth rate of global augmented reality market between 2013-2018 has been rated at 132% and advertisers are getting on board as fast as they can.
Why? Because by the year 2018, it is believed that there will be a minimum of 200 million mobile AR users. Apps will likely come standard in new smartphones in the coming years that include some form of augmented reality. You already can point your phone at an object to have it trigger a video or further information about what you’re seeing. This technology is only going to expand.
This isn’t technology that’s just for the Millennials or Generation Z. This is technology that appeals to everyone. The world is growing smaller and we have more information that needs to be known for good decision making every day. Thanks to AR and VR, we’re going to all be able to access that data sooner rather than later.