Augmented Reality is a technology that enables to “augment”our vision of reality through the superimposition of multi-media contents and digital information, conveyed through the camera of any device: smartphones, smart glasses, viewers, computer desktops. Thus, by exploiting diverse displays, we manage to turn huge amounts of data into images or 3D animations, overlayed on real objects.
Augmented Reality’s range of use is potentially vast, from training tools to customers presentations, to collaborative design environments. Therefore, it’s not by chance that businesses were the first to envisage this technology’s high, increasingly interesting potential.
Augmented Reality represents one of the most useful tools to make businesses evolve according to Industry 4.0, since it allows interaction with the companies’ most treasured capital: data. Thanks to AR, the smart factories – namely those clever businesses founded on the Internet of Things and Big Data principles - can monitor the correct functioning of production, maintenance and assistance operations, as well as perform quality controls.
AR enables to revolutionise the way products are designed, produced, sold and managedin many diverse sectors. Grasping the innovative power of this technology, Vection was among the first European businesses to focus on AR and its endless applications.
In the manufacturing industry, AR helps in the maintenance and repair of service machines and the control of services and plants from remote. In the medical sector, there are ongoing experiments to support surgery and to train qualified personnel. As for logistics, Augmented Reality helps to localize products quickly, thus solving both the picking and the order control process in warehouses. Besides enhancing the efficiency of the production process and reducing errors, AR can be a key resource for the marketing and communication sector to gain customers through engaging visual experiences.
According to a recent Capgemini study, businesses are increasingly investing in Augmented Reality projects. The report reviewed over 700 managers of businesses belonging to different sectors:it turns out that, in 3-years’ time, 50% of companies that aren’t currently using AR solutionsplan to integrate these services within the production process. Results of the “Augmented andVirtual Reality in Operations: A guide for investment research” showed how 82% of companies that already use this technology claim to have had equal or greater benefits, compared to their expectations.
The report also highlights how AR is used for repair and maintenance, particularly to consult reference materials in digital format, to search for an expert from remote, to digitally visualize components that aren’t visible during the assembling phase and the instructions within workstations.
Augmented Reality is also very useful in the design and assembling activities, namely to visualize instructions in digital format, simulate the product’s performance in extreme conditions, visualize the infrastructures from different angles and overlap design components on pre-existing modules.
In the end, AR enables companies to broad their own vision and to access information in a clear and intuitive way. Increasingly fast and accessible software make this technology available to companies of any size, that will consequently enter the future and revolutionize their way of doing business.