Augmented Reality is the super-imposition of computer-generated imagery on top of real-world environment. The technology is capable of inserting and overlaying digital and virtual information onto the real-world environment for better user experience. Currently, there are several industries which have deployed this technology by either prototyping AR applications or using it within their operations to augment human performance.
Healthcare – Various AR solutions are made available to ease surgeon’s ability to work in small spaces, on complicated conditions, by providing detailed imagery. Microsoft’s HoloLens offers surgeons an extensive MR platform for planning and conducting surgical procedures. Moreover, healthcare companies have incorporated AR in their operations, for instance, locating a vein with AccuVein, an application software, that uses AR technology to find the blood vessels of a patient.
Manufacturing – In a factory setup, using an AR software application, staffs can now easily organize their assembly lines and warehouses. The application of augmented reality technology solution helps turn complex assembly operations into a relatively simpler task, even for a novice. For instance, an AR application software Evolar is being used by manufacturing operatives in warehouses to locate and store packages as well as to sort them. Moreover, customized and industry-specific AR technology solutions are being used in the maintenance of machines.
Aerospace – Aerospace is one of the most asset-intensive industries in the world, with equipment and parts that are expensive and low in availability numbers. Even the slightest improvements in asset functionality and maintenance can yield significant cost and efficiency advantages. AR solution providers in collaboration with airline companies have developed cost-effective software solutions for creating the computer-generated visualizations for aircraft preventative and remedial maintenance. For instance, Airbus has developed and launched the Skywise open platform to collect vast amount of data generating from Airbus in-service aircraft, combine them with airline and OEM data to perform in-depth data analysis for developing applications targeted at optimizing maintenance and, improving airline operations and fleet performance.
Automotive industry – Successor to the heads-up display in aircraft, the application of augmented reality technology solution was also introduced in automotive industries. The AR solution can be used for repair and maintenance of vehicle motor or complex equipment. Workers are beginning to use AR headsets and glasses while they perform their repair and maintenance jobs to provide them with useful information on the spot, suggest potential fixes, and point out potential trouble areas. This AR application area will only continue to get stronger as machine-to-machine and IoT technology grow and can feed information directly to augmented reality technology solution.
Conclusion – It is expected that in the next three to five years, augmented reality technology solutions are likely to be used at a significantly higher volume as the AR hardware cost and software application development cost may come down in future. As cost of hardware and software reduces, the readiness for deploying AR across industries will open the market for established vendors and new entrants.
Sr. Research Analyst,