I read an interesting article on 9 trends in Augmented Reality in 2019 and 2020 and here I elaborate a bit on them adding a 10th one. Let’s start with a look at the market.
- AR is changing the show and stealing the market
VR was the main focus of researchers, and then of business, in rendering of bits into images. In a way VR is easier than AR since in VR you can have full control of what you are creating. In AR, on the contrary. you need to add a coherence between the world you are creating, the augmentation, and the physical one. If the two of them are not in synch you get a very poor result. Additionally, real time processing becomes even more important since you have to react in real time to any changes in the physical world to ensure you remain in synch.
In these last 3 years sensors technology and processing capabilities have progressed significantly making it possible to create an ever more convincing Augmentation.
At this point AR gets the upper hand, basically because of the potential market it can reach. As of 2019 there are 250 million smartphones enabled with ARCore (Android) and 380 million smartphone enabled with ARKit (IOs). This is a huge market and we have seen many AR Apps on the market. As of March 2019 there were more than 3,000 apps on the Android and IOs stores (see the picture).
If you think that’s big (and it is) consider that Juniper foresee the number of AR apps used in the market by 2022 (instances of apps, Juniper is counting the number of users per app) to reach 9.1 billion (with AR social apps taking the lion’s share with over 6 billion apps instances). By 2022 there should be over 1 billion unique active AR users (hence each one on average using 9 apps AR enabled).
This figures are mostly based on the consumer market. Consider that the professional market is also making greater and greater use of AR. ARtillery Research is expecting the AR market in industry to reach 35.2 billion $ in 2021 (out of a total market of 39 billion $ for XR). Bain&Company survey on industry pointed out that whilst only 13% on industry was using AR in 2018 this percentage will grow in the next three years (2012) to 42%, expanding both in number of industries as in number of sectors.