Top 5 VR and AR Trends in 2023
As we are about to say goodbye to the first decade of the 21st Century, it is only fitting that we discuss some of the most important technological developments of our time. For some people, machine learning and artificial intelligence are huge. For others, the Internet of Things or IoT is even bigger. Moreover, some think that the biggest technological feat of this decade is AR and VR. The AR and VR trend 2023 has changed a lot about training, business, and gaming. And we might see AR gadgets everywhere within the next few years.
What Is Augmented Reality (AR)?
AR is a technology that can superimpose a virtual image from the computer to the user’s real-life surroundings. So, if you have an AR set, you can feel like you are playing with a ball even when you are in your room. The environment around you can feel quite real. And that is why its professional uses can include different types of simulations.
You might already be using AR in your smartphones such as Snapchat or Instagram filters. Moreover, there are apps that help you try-out clothes or a new haircut through AR. The world might see 6G technology soon and that is when AR could shine through. You could virtually put yourself in any situation right from the comfort of your home.
How Does Virtual Reality (VR) Work?
As the name suggests, the virtual reality environment is completely digital and made-up. While you can augment an addition into your real-life surroundings with AR, VR is completely an illusion. So, you can feel like you are in outer space or the top of a mountain. But in reality, you could be at your office desk. So, there are no parts of the real world in the simulation that you are experiencing with VR.
Augmented Reality vs Virtual Reality
The main difference between AR and VR could be the equipment that you need for each. The goggles, VR/AR sets, and other equipment can be completely different and usually isn’t interchangeable. Moreover, AR users can control their own movements but the system controls VR. So, you might be wondering if AR is better than VR or vice versa. To understand both concepts, we’d have to take a look at their pros and cons.
Advantages of Augmented Reality
Augmented reality has a wide variety of practical applications and advantages. We can use AR in medicine, the military, gaming, and so much more. Now, even FIFA uses the technology for goal-line and offside calls.
Here are some of the pros:
- We can reduce the fine line between the virtual and actual world with the help of AR.
- It can interact freely with nature and the real-life environment.
- Apps such as Google Maps can help superimpose routes on roads to pretty much any destination worldwide.
- Brands such as IKEA can help you see how a piece of furniture would look like in your home using AR technology.
- It can help in the medical industry and swifter diagnoses of diseases thus overall improving the life expectancy of patients.
- AR is easy-to-use once the equipment is set up.
- We can save money by testing hypotheses or theories in augmented reality before practically applying them in real-life situations.
Disadvantages of AR
While AR is a huge leap forward in technology, it comes with its fair share of drawbacks as well. Here are some of them:
- The overall cost of setting up an AR system and getting supporting AR devices can be a lot.
- It can be a full-time commitment to maintaining AR systems.
- AR-based applications are not always fully secure and can be a risk to the cybersecurity framework of the network they are on.
- The testing process can be long and tedious if the engineers focus on performance speeds and accuracy.
The Pros of VR
Virtual Reality can help us simulate complete illusions. So, we can stretch the possibilities by a fair margin. Here are some of the most apparent pros of using VR technology:
- Training skilled individuals such as doctors, pilots, and nurses can become a lot easier and risk-free.
- The virtual world can have a lot of stark details and can be a lot closer to reality.
- It paves the way for effective communication techniques such as TeamViewer, Zoom, Skype, etc.
- Facebook’s Metaverse is also a practical implementation of VR and what we can do in a completely digital world.
- VR can open up new ways and methods for using cryptocurrencies in digital spaces except for wallet-to-wallet transactions.
The Cons of Virtual Reality
No technology can give you everything and not have some disadvantages. Because nothing in this world is perfect. So, here is why VR isn’t all rainbows and butterflies:
- It can have a huge cost associated with its use and maintenance.
- Communication through VR can increase gaps between humans and we could lose the intimacy of human touch and body language.
- Escaping the real world might feel like a great distraction but it can have serious psychological implications on the human mind.
- The technology is still experimental and needs a lot of research for further development.
VR training rooms can help but cannot exactly replicate real-life situations. A great example of this could be the case of pilot Captain Sully. He landed his aircraft in the Hudson Valley in an emergency situation. The VR tech in his inquiry hearing claimed that a landing was possible at the nearest runway. But later on, a response time delay was added to the simulation that proved it was humanly impossible to do so.
5 Important AR and VR Trends 2023
Back when AR and VR first hit the commercial scene, they were novelties. Of course, technology was revolutionary. But people couldn’t seem to move beyond Snapchat filters and basic VR games. However, the market soon began to evolve and improve on existing AR and VR technology. In a world where net neutrality is under siege, tech leaders have invested efforts to create better ways for people to interact with technology and each other.
AR and VR technologies became immensely popular during the last half of the decade. Popular games like Pokémon Go gave a whole new meaning to augmented reality as entertainment. At the same time, technology like Oculus Rift (now owned by Facebook) and PlayStation VR emerged, kickstarting the current augmented reality trends 2023. Today, there are several real-world use cases for AR and VR, with more on the way. So, without further ado, let’s take a close look at the 5 biggest and most important trends in virtual reality and augmented reality technology:
#1: Virtual Reality Trends 2023 for Risk-Free Training
One of the most important and effective uses of virtual reality and augmented reality is in training. Consider high-risk jobs like being a surgeon, an airline pilot, or manning sophisticated military equipment. In all of these jobs and many others like them, the margin for error is extremely low. That means any error could potentially have disastrous outcomes, even leading to the loss of lives. The problem is, unless these people get the right experience, they won’t be able to become effective professionals.
AR and VR trend 2023 offer a unique alternative solution. Instead of having your medical interns operate on actual patients, you can first train them in VR or AR. That way, even if they do make an error, nobody gets hurt, and they still get to learn and gain experience. The same applies to training fighter pilots or commercial pilots. An inexperienced pilot could easily crash an aircraft, potentially killing passengers and causing property damage. But if a pilot can learn how to fly specific aircraft using AR and VR, the risk of pilot error goes down. The United States Air Force is leading the VR training charge.
#2: Augmented Reality Trends 2023 for Remote Assistance
Another major trend we’re seeing is a shift towards using AR and VR technology to offer remote assistance. This is potentially a game-changer. Take this for example. You break down during a road trip in the middle of nowhere, without access to AAA. Normally, you’d have to hike miles to the nearest gas station or mechanic and get your car towed and fixed. But with software like TeamViewer, you don’t have to go anywhere for assistance.
Software such as this makes use of your smartphone’s camera as an eye. That way, the person on the other end offering remote assistance can see what you’re seeing. But what’s really exciting is that the person can place AR markers for you on your car, say in the engine bay. These markers point out areas you need to pay attention to, helping you get your car running without needing to find a mechanic.
#3: New Directions in Gaming
Professional gamers have fast internet speed for gaming and specialized PCs. Of course, something as novel as VR and AR was always going to make its way into gaming. Pokémon Go is perhaps the biggest example of early AR games. But that was just the beginning. With sophisticated VR technology and better, more powerful processors, there are more serious gaming applications than a smartphone game.
VR gaming has already started to make waves within the industry. Popular platforms like Steam, Sony PlayStation, and even Oculus Rift have come out with much more advanced VR games. With advanced virtual reality trends 2023, the new games include Samurai Slaughter House, Zenith, and The Last Worker. With gaming studios working on even more sophisticated VR technology, the gaming industry is preparing itself for a huge transition. While the primary purpose is still entertainment. VR gaming is much more immersive than PC, console, or even smartphone games.
#4: An E-Commerce Revolution in the Making
One of the industries that VR has had the biggest impact on is the retail industry. The largest e-commerce stores like Amazon and Alibaba are already working on leveraging VR to generate more traffic, more sales, and better customer experience.
Consider Buy+, Alibaba’s VR store. The Chinese e-commerce giant unveiled the world’s largest VR mall in October 2016. The app got over 8 million downloads just in its first week. Amazon soon followed in Alibaba’s footsteps and opened “Experience Kiosks” all over India on Prime Day. While VR shopping remains a niche market, it is obvious that the biggest e-commerce players have it under consideration.
#5: VR, AR, and the Internet of Things
We have all heard about IoT or the Internet of Things. IoT devices are smart sensors, switches, and other equipment that can communicate with each other over the same network. Most AR and VR technologies today have use cases in industrial maintenance workflows. IoT devices can detect and even predict maintenance issues in industrial equipment. They can then send alerts to maintenance personnel, and remotely assist them in repairs or maintenance with AR or VR.
IoT devices may still be a novel concept, as is the concept of the smart home. But in industrial settings, IoT devices and immersive technologies like virtual reality and augmented reality have very real applications.