The future of AR is now
The influence of technology in recent years has helped users connect the real world with the virtual world – augmented reality (AR) has brought the unimaginable to life. AR is now present in all industries, transforming the way we learn, make decisions and interact with the physical world. From clothing companies using virtual testing tools to help customers shop from home to furniture companies creating AR-based apps that help customers preview what a table, chair or cabinet would look like in their home to telecom operators leveraging AR use cases to showcase the benefits of 5G networks, the AR revolution has arrived and is transforming our lives – from now on!
The rapidly evolving role of AR in communication
In terms of experience and communications, AR has had a significant effect in all sectors. If brands hadn’t realized the potential of AR earlier, the pandemic has helped them realize and harness the power of AR to build and secure relationships with customers despite several restrictions on movement.
During the lockdown, as the whole world went online, it accelerated AR’s role in digital communication. This allowed users to spend more time on their devices as they sought to connect with family, friends, and events outside of their own four walls.
AR is no longer limited to Snapchat face filters as 2021 draws to a close, we’ve seen AR trends transforming industries such as automotive, online shopping, education, networking ( 5G) and health.
As working from home became the new normal, arduous videoconferencing work and meetings needed a revamp – a new design. Backed by AR, industry experts have built exciting filters via the instant camera to add much needed fun and flair to these meetings. For example, Zoom has teamed up with Snap to bring Snapchat filters to meetings.
As the focus is on digital communication and most of our communication takes place online, there is an increasing emphasis on accurate representations of ourselves in the digital world. The personalization of Bitmoji AR avatars for better personal privacy and to give virtual influencers unique and interesting means of communication.
What makes it work?
AR creates innovative digital experiences that transform the customer journey into a connected and immersive visual experience. AR interacts and engages consumers by virtually bringing the product or service together in ways that would have been impossible before. GenZ or the “Snapchat Generation” are driving new behaviors and are more likely to use AR and other creative tools.
Since most consumers have AR compatible smartphones, brands have started to embrace the tools offered by this immersive technology. Since AR improves on what already exists, the void left by physical presence is no longer a barrier to an engaging customer experience.
For example: Snap is embarking on a strategic partnership with the online shopping platform Flipkart, to enable augmented reality (AR) through Snap’s camera kit on the Flipkart storefront on their smartphone apps. This will help provide customers with remote assistance through augmented reality.
The need for a solid increase in skills
To carry the torch of AR, it is necessary to empower aspiring young people and educate creators of digital technologies across the country. Snap’s focus and belief in augmented reality led us to partner with Navjyoti India Foundation and Skillenza to host a special Lens Studio workshop for International Women’s Day earlier this year. In addition, the Lens Studio workshops allowed students to create common experiences and communicate their ideas in a compelling way. Snap has organized several Lens Studio workshops to teach AR to over 5,000 students from different schools and colleges across India.
Efforts to democratize augmented reality include access to relevant software, tools and platforms used in the AR landscape. For example, Snap’s Lens Studio is a powerful app that helps people create augmented reality experiences and is accessible to everyone. This allowed young people from all over the country to experience augmented reality and the sharing of digital skills.
Enabling digital transformation
As AR continues to grow with advancements in technology, it has a lot to offer to transform industries across the globe. Technology has grown from a novelty to one of the most powerful storytelling formats.
The opinions expressed above are those of the author.
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