2016 was the first big year for virtual reality. Consumers got offerings in all price ranges from the affordable Google Cardboard to the high-end HTC Vive and Oculus Rift. Last year was also significant for augmented reality, with games like Pokémon Go taking the world by storm. Even though there were some big offerings in the AR and VR scene, because it’s so new, there’s a lot of room for improvement. Here are some predictions about the top 10 AR and VR technology trends we could witness in 2017.
Every VR headset requires either a cell phone or a powerful gaming computer. Fans believe that VR headsets will become as common as mobile phones one day, so it’s only natural that we get there by playing amazing VR and AR games. Right now, there’s a need for better VR developers that can utilize current graphic capability. We’ll see an increased focus on better games and better graphics this year.
Experts believe that VR will bring the best social interactions ever. Right now, we’re not sure how those interactions will work. It’s not like developers can just stick a typical web chat room in our headset and call that entertaining. Here’s what we do know now that Facebook owns Oculus: the interactions will be in 3D, with users chatting in real time. Hopefully, we learn more soon.
Heads up displays on luxury cars are awesome, but thanks to AR, it’s going to get even cooler. It might take time before the average guy can afford it, but we plan to see more mobile device integrated car displays in the future.
With mixed reality or MR, digital objects and content exist in our real-world. Microsoft is committed making MR something that everyone can access, so hopefully, we hear big announcements from the MR startups working on it now.
Businesses are always looking for new ways to differentiate themselves, and the answer could lie in AR. The travel, shopping, and sporting industries can benefit from AR by offering new ways to purchase items, especially if they’re the first to feature it in their business.
Medical VR could deliver an educational experience to doctors and nurses in the future. There’s also evidence that it could lead to better outcomes for patients. As hospitals around the country test VR, there’s a good chance it’ll see increased use in 2017 and beyond.
The health industry isn’t the only sector that can use AR and VR to deliver amazing educational content. Schools and universities will offer more real-time courses and create games for students that help their classrooms immerse in learning this year.
There’s a long list of AR products including smartphones, computers, and headsets that will start gaining more popularity this year. As the public learns more about AR, this will cause a huge boom in the AR and VR sector.
Right now, you have to be tethered to a device or in a specific range to experience VR. There are many companies out there creating wireless headsets that make VR a portable experience and allow you to roam outside of your home. Hopefully more comfortable, wireless devices come to market later this year.