AR was just getting started when Pokémon Go was released. The billion dollar industry of AR is on the brink of changing the world as we know it – reinventing the way we shop, improving healthcare, making food distribution more efficient, and even helping fix your car after a breakdown.

Augmented reality technology is here, and it is poised to change how we see and interact with each other and businesses. Below are our predictions for the top future uses of AR.

ARKit will change smartphone use

Apple’s release of ARKit has allowed developers to begin the process of native app design that places a digital layer over our view of the real world through our smartphone cameras. Simple applications of AR such as Andrew Hart’s ARKit + CoreLocation use shown on Twitter are just the beginning. The practical uses for AR are almost endless; as each new use of this technology is developed, the possible applications for its use are multiplied.

Immersing ourselves in a virtual world while still being aware of the reality around us will help train better doctors, mechanics, and other technical employees. The practicalities of doing so will quicken the process for reaching higher standards of qualifications in numerous areas. According to Glen Gilmore, a Forbes’ Top 20 Digital Media Influencer “AR will move away from fun games we sometimes play to rich content and capabilities we always use.”

ARKit will encourage the development of more AR apps and software, making it an integral part of our everyday lives.

Life is a game

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Gamification will aid the adoption of AR. From sales to customer service, the addition of scoring points, rewards, and scoreboards will make diverse aspects of our life and career more entertaining and rewarding.

The gamification of mobile apps and products has already shown benefits in terms of user engagement and brand loyalty. Businesses will be able to use similar techniques through AR with employees to assist their engagement at work. Using this technology in a gamification setting will drive them to perform daily tasks and become happier in their jobs.

Futurum’s founding partner Daniel Newman sees companies using mobile AR systems with scoreboards and game-like elements that react to workers’ real-world environments and allow top performers to earn immediate rewards. They could even save up to convert these rewards into benefits like movie tickets or paid time off.

Consumerism becomes fun

Marketing is just the initial step for redefining e-commerce with AR. Online shopping will become more effective, fun, and amusing by increasing usefulness with apps that help consumers try products before purchasing. For example there’s Sephora’s Modiface and GAP’s dressing room app that help to make purchasing decisions by letting you try on their products from your own home.

The applications for AR to enhance consumers’ experiences are almost endless, and all designed to create better, more complete shopping experiences. These in turn create delightful, satisfying experiences and build goodwill towards the brands that build them.

Augmented reality will aid in contextualizing reality, changing not only consumer experiences but also expectations and behavior. Already, figures from Retail Perceptions show that 71% of consumers would shop more often at stores offering AR, and 40% would be willing to pay more for an item that they could experience through AR.

Safer work environments and enhanced industrial design

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Tools like DAQRI’s smart helmet are allowing workers to become aware of unseen influences that could lead to dangers in their workspace, potential breakdowns, or catastrophic failures. In factories, mines, and industrial environments across the world, workers can become more protected and productive with the use of AR.

Product design is already becoming more effective, and designers are able to try more things with the use of AR. Imagine car designers being able to sit inside the cars they are envisioning, enabling them to test and experiment with ideas at a vastly reduced cost. They also have an improved understanding of space and relationship to surrounding objects.

Research and development costs will become vastly reduced, in turn marking down the final product cost. It’s not just the car industry that will benefit from AR; electrical plants, nuclear facilities, and large-scale factories will also be able to scale the uses of AR technology with massive benefits.

AR is primed to redirect our learning, guide our decisions, and help us make better choices in a consumerist context and in daily life. The applications of augmented reality will change healthcare, production, design, consumerism, advertising and almost every other facet of our lives that we can think of. It will become an expected part of smartphone technology first, providing us with a window to the world that allows us to see much more than we ever could.

AR is already changing the world; prepare to join the revolution and transform the future with it.


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