There has been a lot of talk about virtual reality (VR) as a big tech trend. And while there has been progress made in the VR market, it’s mainly made its advances in the video game field.
That’s interesting … but there’s a similar technology that has many more practical uses.
While VR presents a whole different world around the user, this similar technology, called augmented reality, shows you the world around you, but adds in programmed images.
As crazy as it sounds, you could argue that the breakthrough product for augmented reality is Pokémon Go.
With this app, users can go around and catch Pokémon in real life. Of course, the Pokémon are not really there, wandering the earth, but they appear on the player’s phone screen.
That’s the essence of augmented reality. And some companies are using it to do some very practical and helpful things.
A few practical uses that businesses have come up with for augmented reality are assembly directions overlaying a piece of furniture, labels for car parts to guide you with repairs or even discounts in a grocery store.
In fact, there’s an app called SmartShop currently being tested in the U.K. that shows you where you can find special deals in grocery stores. This is what it looks like:
One of the most popular augmented reality tools in use right now is Snapchat, a product of Snap Inc. (NYSE: SNAP).
With its custom filters, users can edit the world around them by inserting drawings or images into the pictures they take:
Snap is expected to take full advantage of the AR trend. According to the S&P Capital IQ research firm, its revenues are set to go from $875 million this year to $5.17 billion in 2021: an incredible 490% increase.
Internal Analyst, Banyan Hill Publishing