Why augmented reality will overtake virtual reality in business

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Tom Chatfield
@tomchatfield
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Summary

  • Augmented reality and training
  • Augmented reality and design
  • Augmented reality and maintenance
  • Augmented reality and telepresence
  • The potential of augmented reality in business

La virtual reality and augmented reality are two emerging technologies. At present, the virtual reality market is larger than that of augmented reality. However, over the years to come, this trend could be reversed.

This is predicted by Jeremy Dalton, an analyst at PwC, which seeks to help companies understand immersive technologies and the potential they represent for their industries. To support his analysis, the specialist evokes several use cases for which AR may be more relevant than VR...



Augmented reality and training

Virtual reality training is increasingly popular with companies in all industries. It is very easy for a company to create a training simulation to train its employees to all kinds of tasks in a secure virtual environment, rather than having to organize training in the real world or send employees on dedicated stays.

However, augmented reality could be even more effective by making it possible to combine the virtual with the real for training that is halfway between the theoretical and the practical. For example, it would be possible to superimpose virtual instructions on real elements to teach employees how to perform manipulations, as Microsoft already offers with its HoloLens headset, for example ...

Augmented reality and design

Virtual reality and augmented reality can also be used for the design of products, property or industrial tools. Rather than producing multiple physical prototypes over the weeks, it is possible to design them directly in virtual reality to be able to visualize them at scale.


Le cycle of improvements and updates can therefore be greatly reduced, and different experts from all over the world can collaborate on a common project without needing to physically meet. Here again, augmented reality could prove to be even more relevant than virtual reality by allowing designs to be merged into the real environment for more realistic visualizations.


Augmented reality and maintenance

As mentioned previously, augmented reality can be used to overlay virtual instructions on the real environment of the user. Through the visor of their augmented reality headset, the employee will be able to see objects or parts of a machine highlighted in order to know what to fix and how to proceed.

In this sense, it can allow an employee to perform a task more easily and with increased precision. In fact, this reduces the training needs for employees. For example, the number of senior engineers required on site is reduced since they can communicate instructions remotely.

Augmented reality and telepresence

Within virtual reality, employees of the same company can get together as avatars in order to communicate or collaborate without needing to meet physically.

However, with augmented reality, it is possible to meet in the real working environment (such as a meeting room). Additionally, rather than having to go through avatars, employees can appear as holograms generated in real time. There again, Microsoft has developed such a technology called Holoportation.

The potential of augmented reality in business


Currently, virtual reality applications are more easily accessible than augmented reality ones. However, according to Dalton, the enterprise augmented reality market is expected to overtake that of virtual reality in the long run.


Generally, augmented reality allows virtual to enter the real working environment of the company. Something that VR does not allow. This is an undeniable advantage for professional use cases.

Currently, the adoption of augmented reality in business is limited by the price, the design of the helmets, the difficulty of use and often the lack of knowledge. However, these different barriers will logically be overcome over the years to come...



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