The field of computer-augmented reality is heating up, fueled both by system capabilities and consumer demand. The realm of extended reality (XR) has various fiefdoms, labelled Virtual reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR), and Mixed Reality (MR), depending on how much they intrude into and modify the user’s world image.
With so many different XR products now available for a variety of use cases, it is important to understand how the different technologies are used, and companies which create them. IDTechEx Research recently published a report called “Augmented, Mixed and Virtual Reality 2020-2030”, which provides an understanding of the XR market, and includes market research on AR (augmented reality), VR (virtual reality) and MR (mixed reality) areas, compiled from historic data from nearly 100 companies and over 170 distinct products and forecasts from 2020-2030.
AR companies have received high levels of investment over the past 10 years, with investors targeting the future potential of companies. For example, Magic Leap received over $500m in funding in 2017, but only released its first product in 2019. Although the turnaround to reap the financial reward is potentially longer than VR products, there is still a high level of interest in this field.
One use case discussed in the report is the use of augmented reality products to help solve the “Skills gap” problem. This is where talented, skilled workers are leaving the workforce to retire before the knowledge they have gained can be passed onto new workers. This report discusses how augmented reality headsets allow workers to record their processes, to be transformed into workflows, increasing efficiency for new workers who can follow the steps.