Hello Future: AR & VR – New dimensions of connection

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Facebook IQ analyzes trends that are gaining momentum across their platforms around the world and creates an understanding of what drives over 3 billion people and millions of companies forward, and there are shifts that affect our future. We have summarized the report “Hello Future: AR & VR - New dimensions of connection” by Facebook IQ from June 2021, where they have analyzed the future of AR and VR. Enjoy your reading!

We know that our success is based on how we prepare and some are even obsessed with it. In fact, it is the people who create the future and what happens is something that people have built. It is about vision, making decisions and above all about daring. People are constantly looking for what the future will bring – what we can do at this stage is talk to our fellow human beings such as colleagues, partners or visionaries as we practically build our future together with the help of new technology that revolutionizes how we are all brought together.

In the future, it will be AR (Augmented reality) and VR (Virtual Reality) that bring us together – but not in the way we have imagined. People will feel that they are close to each other, but in the real world, they are thousands of miles apart. The digital devices that we will join through are said to be less distracting and more instinctive.

Look forward – The future is bright

Imagine that you in the future can be present at every moment and that there is no limit to technology or distance. For people, presence is not just about our mental health or well-being it is about our existence. The pandemic has taught us how important it is to feel present, when we no longer can meet up with friends, loved ones or colleagues as we are used to and are part of our everyday lives. In this case, today’s technology has been incredibly valuable and people have been able to keep in touch via mobile phones, video calls and social media even if physical contact has not been possible. The question that many ask themselves – is this the new normal?

What do the statistics say about VR & AR?

  • Global spending on VR and AR is estimated to increase by 6 times as much between 2020-2024.
  • 75% of business leaders are forecast to use AR and VR in 2023.
  • Searches for AR and VR related content have increased by 44%.
  • Members of groups related to AR & VR have increased by 74% on Facebook.
  • Users who contact salespeople on the Facebook Marketplace and pay attention to AR and VR have increased by 75% year after year.
  • 78% of global users say that AR is a fun way to get in touch with new brands.
  • 55% of the Spark AR creator group are women.

What AR and VR promise is to break barriers and fill the gap between the physical and digital world. The real magic is when technology gradually disappears into the background and becomes an instinctive part of our lives.

Mind: AR and VR allow us to feel presence on a new level, when digital devices limit our ability to be involved at every opportunity.

Distance: VR and AR let us be there with people who mean a lot to us, when distance distances us from friends, family, and colleagues.

Body: When we are no longer able to do the things we wanted to do due to physical limitations, AR and VR give us tools to experience these as if they did not exist.

Money: When we can not afford to do the things we want or explore new hobbies, VR and AR can offer alternative activities.

Time: When it comes to demands on our time, our ability to have contact with others limits us. AR and VR help us to reach out in new ways and to reach and participate on our own terms.

Justice: When our choices are limited due to an economic situation, origin or gender, VR and AR can take down barriers and open new doors.

What opportunities are there with AR and VR?

AR and VR will work differently depending on what aspect the technology is used and we will dive into 4 factors that AR/VR can advantageously influence.

1. EMPATHY

At a time when society feels divided, VR can help us practice feeling empathy and reflecting on the world we live in.

What is new?
VR helps people retell stories to those who can’t make their voice heard. Projects like “We live here” allow us to understand their reality, let us walk in their shoes and gain a deeper understanding of the issues that affect their everyday lives.

What is the next step?
With the help of VR, people will feel the feeling that no gravity exists and are surrounded by the earth from above, what astronauts refer to as the “Overview effect” – an understanding of the world and humanity’s shortcomings when you see the planet from space.

“I am most excited about an inclusive future for AR/VR. For me this means— on the African continent — we will have access to the technology; our voices will shape its emergence. We will create for good or bad as the rest of the world will; we will not be locked out of the potential and promise of this exponential technology and all it means for the future of the human race” – JUDITH OKONKWO Founding Director, AR/VR Africa said. 

2. EXPERIENCE

The things we want to do but are affected by distance, time, money and access can become accessible and affordable with the help of AR and VR.

What is new?
When the workout moves to AR, and the gym comes to you instead of you going there. Cool experiences like “Supernatural” allowed access to high quality exercises from anywhere.

What is the next step?
When AR and VR will take the next step in going from observe to participate. Imagine having a personal training session with some of the world’s top football stars in the living room.

3. PRODUCTIVITY

AR and VR can free us from allowing distance between us or the circumstances that defect who has access to health care, services, jobs or education in the future.

What is new?
In the medical field, AR and VR can help healthcare prevent complications and save lives by allowing doctors to practice the procedure before entering the operating room. AR can also streamline the time it takes to train new colleagues in a case where Walmart used VR in its onboarding and reduced the learning time by 96%.

What is the next step?
AR and VR not only enable us to develop world-class education but also develop how we learn. Imagine when students of the future can physically experience London in 1943 and gain an understanding of the human story.

4. Solutions

AR and VR not only challenge the classic marketing funnel but they win over it by revealing new ways to go for customer engagement, transparency, brand loyalty, and conversions.

What is new?
AR solutions already fill the space between online and offline shopping by allowing customers to test, explore and consider products in a real environment. Through VR, brands can also make their vision become emotional experiences and tell stories in a new innovative way. And lastly, thanks to AR, people can test products before they buy – even when it comes to choosing a tattoo.

What is the next step?
AR and VR take the relationship between customers and brands to a new level – through how brands can engage with people. Imagine a personal meeting with a successful clothing designer or see how a lipstick fits your lips by becoming part of the chemical composition of the product.

“By 2030, we will be able to enter digital environments that appear completely real to all of our five senses simultaneously.” – Ericsson ConsumerLab said. 

See how AR can drive business success. Scan the QR code with your smartphone camera to open the Facebook app, dive into a shark cage in South Africa and book an adventure with a fictional business, all in a single experimental moment.

Together we create our future

FACEBOOK REALITY LABS: The innovation principles of those responsible.

1. Never surprise people

“We are transparent about how our products work and the data they collect. We communicate clearly and candidly so people can understand the tradeoffs we considered and make informed decisions about whether and how to use our products ”

2. Introduce controls that play a role

“We provide controls – where and when they matter – to put people in charge of their experience”

3. Consider all products

“We build products that are inclusive of our diverse community and design hardware that is not one-size-fits-all.

4. People go first

“When deciding what’s right for our business, the individual and the community, we prioritize what’s best for most people in the community”

“Imagine wearing a pair of glasses that lets you visit with your parents no matter where you are, tour the Louvre on your lunch break and walk and talk with a friend on the other side of the planet and truly feel that they are at your side.” säger Michael Abrash Vice President, Facebook Reality Labs

Read more here about how Facebook take action on the principles above.

Facebook shows the first ads for VR headsets

Seven years ago, Facebook bought Oculus, a company that launched games with VR glasses. Now the platform shows what the first ads can look like in a VR world and they also plan to test them in a number of games and the advertising revenue will be shared between the game developers and Facebook themselves.

An anonymous spokesperson from Facebook said this in connection with the presentation:

“During the tests, we will be able to see how users interact with the ads, if they click on them for more information or if they want to hide them. This is a crucial part of our goal to create a platform that can stand on its own two feet and make the technology available to a new type of content and target group.”

Key takeaways from Facebook IQ

Discover.

  • Explore how other businesses are successfully using AR and VR to transform their strategy.
  • Educate yourself in AR and VR so that you are aware of whether this is the best way for your business or not. 
  • Learn about how your business creates added value for your customers with the help of AR and VR.

Transform.

  • Organize your team and give them rights to be clear about which KPIs to work against.
  • Use your community to inform, inspire them about your AR / VR strategy.
  • Educate your organization on how AR and VR can affect your industry.

Experiment.

  • Give yourself time to experiment and let it go up and down to find your way to get your brand out.
  • Build responsible innovation principles from the start.
  • Find a good SparkAR partner or Oculus developer to unlock the AR / VP ecosystem.

Summary

As we mentioned at the beginning of the article, together we build our future from a vision that is higher than what the world expects. It is built by those who confidently say “Let’s go” instead of “We will see”. A lot is about daring to venture out and technology creates new opportunities for your business to develop, it is important to constantly keep up to date.

This is a summary of Facebook IQ’s report, read more here “Hello Future: AR / VR: New dimensions of connections”.

Do you want to explore inspiring examples of how to work with AR? Feel free to watch our webinar“Engaging content adapted for a digital world” (Swedish) on demand here

Hope you enjoyed this article. Do not forget to subscribe to our newsletter down below to take part of more insights like this!

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