Is Augmented Reality going to be a trillion-dollar industry? – Glimpse of past, present, and future!
In today’s era Augmented Reality is not a new term anymore but it is still the most buzzing word. Now and then the Augmented Reality technology comes up with new technical innovations or tools. Companies are leaving no stone unturned to mark their footprints in implementing this technology. Let us see-
what the CEOs of tech giants have to say about this immersive technology:
Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO-
“ I am excited about AR. My view is it is the next big thing, and it will pervade our entire lives. You and I might be talking about an article and using AR we can pull it up, and can both be looking at the same thing at the same time. I think it is something that doesn’t isolate the people.”
“I regard AR as a big idea, like the smartphone. The smartphone is for everyone, we don’t have to think the iPhone is about a certain demographic, or country, or vertical market: it’s for everyone. I think AR is that big, it’s huge. I get excited because of the things that could be done that could improve a lot of lives”
Marks Zuckerberg, Facebook’s CEO-
“A lot of the use cases for augmented reality, people have started to do on phones and cameras. We will get breakthrough Augmented Reality glasses that will redefine our relationship with technology. Even though some of the early devices seem clunky, I think these will be the most human and social technology platforms anyone has built yet”.
Satya Nadella, Microsoft’s CEO-
“I feel that Augmented Reality is perhaps the ultimate computer”.
This takes me back to the history of Augmented Reality:
You must have heard the word Augmented Reality 5 years ago when the game Pokémon Go was launched. But the history takes us back to more than a century ago in 1901. The term Augmented Reality was coined by Tom Caudell nearly two decades ago. The concept of Augmented Reality was introduced in a novel written by Frank L Baum, more than a century ago. There, the author mentioned “character market” which means a set of electronic glasses that mapped data onto people. Officially, this technology was invented by Ivan Sutherland, prior to him a cinematographer Morton Heilig in 1957 briefly acknowledge Augmented Reality.
Ivan Sutherland, a Harvard professor discovered a Head-Mounted Display system called ‘The Sword of Damocles’ in 1968 and this marked the introduction of Augmented Reality. The concept revolved around offering a real-time experience to users via computer-generated sensors.
Thereafter, a laboratory was dedicated to this technology and was named Videoplace in 1974. Later the technology got out of the laboratory and started accommodating in the real world. The AR technology in its early days was very complex to use and costly. Virtual Fixtures- first properly used Augmented Reality- was developed by Louis Rosenberg in 1992 at USAF Armstrong’s Research Lab.
The first time this immersive technology was commercially implemented by Volkswagen in 2013. The company launched the MATRA app- abbreviated for Mobile Augmented Reality Technical Assistance. This was designed to work for remote assistance. You can know the industries taking advantage of AR remote assistance here.
The next company that embraced then-new technology- is Google. In 2014, one of the biggest tech players used AR in google devices which gave an immersive experience to users.
After Google, another top tech player Microsoft stepped-in to use this technology. Microsoft started working on its AR powered tools HoloLens. HoloLens now has become a widely used tool for different purposes varying from entertainment to training and so on.
In 2016 highly popular game Pokemon Go -developed by Niantic- was launched that worked as the breakthrough of this immersive technology to the masses. Audiences were hugely invested in catching those zombies that made the technology reach in the form of games to 45 million users.
Augmented Reality applications in-the present!
Augmented Reality has surpassed the static phase of being limited to games and entertainment. Now, we can see the application of AR impacting the way we learn, work, and implement. Over the past few years, the technology has diversified its use cases incredibly. Companies are investing a lot in this technology to avail the benefit and mark their footprint in the world of AR.
We have seen the use case of Augmented Reality in different sectors. It is being used in healthcare to assist medical professionals and train students, in automotive to bring the vehicle showroom inside the smartphone, in retail to revolutionize the shopping experience, in education to reshape the learning system, and so on. The AR touch in the application changes the user experience for the better. It increases the engagement and makes the experience interactive which ultimately leads to huge profitability for businesses.
Is Augmented Reality going to be a trillion-dollar industry?
Augmented Reality has undoubtedly garnered the attention of most of the industries and key players. AR will play a key role in driving the global market’s growth, surpassing a value of $338.1 billion in 2025 to $1092.4 billion in 2030. With time the technology is being available to the masses. In the future, we can expect an AR-powered world, integrated with virtual Reality and Artificial Intelligence!
Augmented Reality will be a trillion-dollar industry or not, hugely depends on its affordability to the masses. Technology has converted sci-fi ideas into science-based reality and we can expect a lot more of it in the future. And the growing population looking forward to using AR, assures we will soon see AR as a trillion-dollar industry.
Augmented Reality has immense potential to revolutionize on-going industrial workflow. The competition between tech giants to be the first in the AR world depicts the necessity and advantage of integrating this technology. Would love to know your opinion on the technology and its prospect.