What is Augmented Reality?
According to the Entrepreneur, augmented reality (AR) is defined as ‘an enhanced version of reality created by the use of technology to overlay digital information on an image of something being viewed through a device’. Unlike virtual reality (VR) that creates a fully virtual environment around a user, AR makes use of the existing real-world surroundings and integrates virtual components into this environment. This makes it more interactive and real.
Another great thing about AR is that you only need your smartphone to enjoy it – you won’t need bulky and expensive VR headsets. This means that AR has greater chances to become more widespread. That’s why many startups are using augmented reality in their businesses, like Zukaz, a platform for consumers to “hunt” real cash vouchers, which can be redeemed at selected stores or businesses.
New Moon Studios is a design agency that specialises in AR. They say AR has proven to increase engagement, attract new audiences, create empathy, reduce errors, enhance brand awareness and increase safety. Connecting the digital and physical world has never been more exciting with the current trends in AR.
With AR, you can also tap into social media behaviours. Selfie-sharing is a huge trend on social media business accounts by your team members at events, and you can use AR to create fun branded selfie filters. Or with gamified AR content, you can let people share scores and nominate friends to complete challenges. These fun, shareable experiences are particularly effective for building buzz around a new product launch and accessing new audiences, say Blippar.
AR applications are transforming the way we shop!
AR company Indestry discuss how popular AR has become with retail businesses to connect with shoppers and build retail brands’ visibility. Larger organisations have created an app to enable customers to scan products whilst shopping and see reviews, to help them with their purchasing decision. It’s about the amalgamation of virtual technology and real-life experience coming together.
Setting the marketing world alight
Equally, marketing businesses are utilising AR to advertise their products and services through 3D videos to reach out to their consumers. This involves placing them on their websites and social media like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube channels to promote their business and gain new sales leads.
How to get started with augmented reality
To build AR, Hubspot explains the first steps involve capturing some actual reality with sensors and cameras to collect information on the users’ actual surroundings. This real-time information is a backdrop for the experience. Smartphones like an Android or iPhones that have a phone’s built-in camera, while more complicated devices like Microsoft’s HoloLens use a variety of specialised built-in cameras.
Bringing people and businesses together
The Entrepreneur goes on to illustrate AR is an opportunity to bridge a space for businesses to reach their target audience in real-time. Allowing customers to have a sneak preview of business products or services, using AR is a powerful form of marketing to engage with their consumers innovatively. This new form of marketing is not only effective, but it is also budget-friendly as compared to traditional forms of marketing.
For the full story please see the BQ website.