Technology industry experts and innovators say businesses can benefit hugely from virtual reality. But how can that work to best effect in real-time?
Interest in VR (virtual reality) is exploding as manufacturers bring down the cost of VR technology and advocates explore the business relevance and potential revenue-generating power of a combination of factors. However, it’s not VR alone that makes businesses sit up and take note; it’s the cross-pollination of VR with AR (augmented reality) and AI (artificial intelligence) that makes executives so excited.
Industries like biotech, training, video, and gaming, for example, are expected to grow naturally in the coming years; expanding business opportunities across technology means VR, AR, and AI will become indispensable tools.
For businesses thinking about using virtual reality as a marketing tool to drive revenue. Here some exciting ways VR makes sense for business in the long term.
Try Before You Buy
E-commerce is fueling the manufacturing sectors; companies who have products to sell can see the benefits of VR on the consumer. VR makes it possible for businesses to promote products in an entirely new way. Let’s take clothing retailers, for example.
Any online shopping fan will tell you that the problem with choosing clothes from online retailers is the lack of certainty. Will it suit me? Will my choice fit me? The combination of VR and AI is the answer to the individual personal styling service offered by high-end stores such as Selfridges in London.
The concept behind this technology relies on the correct details and measurements being provided by the customer; then, machine learning algorithms suggest style ideas and size recommendations to the VR program, which reproduces the look for the customer to get an idea of how the item might look before they buy it.
What’s more, manufacturers and retailers who use this type of technology can analyze data to help support supply chain efficiency, create an inventory and boost brand loyalty with insight into customer analytics and preferences. Targeting the shopaholic with personal images of clothes and accessories will happen shortly and all from the comfort of your sofa.
Old Products to New Audiences
Combined AR and VR experiences are a natural extension of the video gaming industry. As VR becomes more mainstream, gaming companies are taking advantage of expanding their markets and introducing products to new audiences.
The combination of VR, AI, and AR technologies saw their most significant revenue growth in 2020. Apple, Microsoft, and Google are spending billions of pounds racing to update VR/AI/AR-supporting technology and be the first to make it the new normal.
These blue-chip companies are on track to Install it on 1.8 billion devices by the end of 2021. Virtual reality is recognized as a fully immersive environment. The user is transported into the applied science and can interact so successfully that VR is being used as a marketing tool, design, and most importantly, for education and training purposes.
Expand Education and Training programs
E-learning has helped prepare students for jobs in many industries over the past few years. Until recently, these programs fell flat when it came to training for jobs requiring hands-on learning, such as pilot training, and some healthcare occupations such as surgery. Now VR can bridge that gap with immersive learning simulations.
According to business consultants McKinsey, the most exciting use of this technology is the extended safety features offered to engineers, technicians, and construction operatives through VR technology.
VR can reproduce dangerous working environments and simulate the use of expensive and possibly hazardous equipment without damage to the employee or equipment. At the same time, employees can use VR/AR/AI to relay important information straight to the organization, giving essential insights about what is happening in real-time; information gained can reinforce learning-development procedures and ultimately save time and money.
The Future of VR in Industry
VR creators are working on an even more immersive angle, using VR with enhanced capabilities such as extended sensory facilities, making it possible to touch and smell, giving the user an all-around experience. While that’s an exciting prospect, businesses are pushing the boundaries of technology even further.
More recently, popular VR applications take complete control of a user’s senses, touch, smell, sight, and hearing to place the user in an entirely virtual environment that feels, looks, and smells realistic.
That’s not all, the combination of VR/AI/AR will lead the revolution, and the collective term is XR (extended reality); XR will be the most transformative tech trend of the next ten years. XR enables super-fast networking that will let us experience VR as an intelligent cloud-based service—making it possible to enjoy the world of learning, gaming, or shopping without lifting a finger.
The future is bright, interactive, and revolutionary. Now, all that is needed are the VR headsets to be readily available in a smaller, lighter and less intrusive design and at an affordable price to everyone. There really won’t be any reason to leave the house.