The augmented reality app business really hasn’t taken off yet. AR has been relatively popular for a few years now, and naturally it’s produced a number of widely used apps. But those who believed AR would essentially overhaul or revolutionize mobile apps have undoubtedly been disappointed. Development, for such an exciting new technological application, has been relatively slow.
AR apps aren’t done emerging though, and in time they will come to occupy more of our mobile app stores. Some of this will happen as a progression of what we’ve already seen, but a great deal of the remaining growth will also come about following the unveiling of high-tech AR glasses, which are expected to be mainstream consumer tech within a few more years. Altogether, we can still expect to see a lot more AR innovation in the next two-to-five years.
Accordingly, these are some of the likely areas that developers will focus on, and some of the areas we should watch for exciting apps and significant new experiences.
Education is already a significant category in mobile apps, both preparing students for the digital world that awaits them, and utilizing new and exciting methods of instruction on a limitless range of subjects. Augmented reality, when it is able to be implemented more broadly, will essentially further these benefits. It represents cutting-edge technology that students can get excited about, and can introduce all sorts of fascinating educational experiences. One example, for instance, is the exploration of planets and solar systems in science classes. Fairly early on in AR’s emergence, we were already seeing examples of people modeling scaled down but exact moons and planets in virtual space. There really is no end to the possibilities.
Somewhat unexpectedly, home organization may actually be getting more attention than any other subject in augmented reality to this point. Many have come to recognize that augmented reality can present digital alterations, model new furniture, and even measure specific spaces in homes. Through a screen or through glasses, people can use a variety of apps to simulate the changes they want to make in their homes, and thus plan for better home organization (or even initial construction or periodic decoration, for that matter). Frankly, it’s already a fairly impressive category, but it’s still one in which more innovation seems inevitable.
Betting & Investing
Betting and investing aren’t categories that get too much buzz in this respect, but it pays to recognize how popular these activities have already gotten on mobile. An expansion of safe sites for casino activity (gaming and betting alike) from diverse international providers has seeped into mobile, such that there are numerous platforms people bet on. Meanwhile, a recent revolution toward mobile investing has also produced a lot of apps that people use to buy and sell stocks and assets. All of these activities, in AR, can be even more exciting. Through glasses, new apps will soon help people betting to see live wagering options pop up even as they watch sports, on TV or in person; in the same way, people can see interactive stock charts, or see analysis or buy and sell options while reading charts or watching analysis.
Home organization is arguably getting the most attention, but games have certainly been in the mix also. Indeed, a lot of AR games have already made it to the consumer market and become popular, though it’s fair to say what they promise for the future is as exciting as the games themselves right now. In this category it’s more difficult to imagine specific advancements because there are so many different types of games. However, looking through what’s available now and simply envisioning smoother, more sophisticated versions of the same will give you some idea of how much gaming can still grow in AR.