In the past few years we have started to see more and more posts and adverts about glasses and head-mounted displays, augmented reality (AR), mobile computing and many more. What do all these digital trends mean? How can we catch up with all these novelties? For most people it is still quite an abstract and exotic technology from the Hollywood movies.
However, some businesses are actively implementing this seemingly ‘sci-fi’ technology into their marketing. Thus, we are seeing animated holograms, interactive displays in shops and virtual 3D models of new houses with furniture. Industries from retail to aviation are using computer-generated objects in a real environment.
Moreover, schools and universities started incorporating gaming elements into their classes. Augmented Reality (AR) is great solution to turn a boring lecture into exceptional experiences via 3D AR modelling. Furthermore, teachers even managed to use AR in physical education. Students start to practice more actively once gym is turned into augmented reality playground.
As fashion and retail industry have always been one of first adopters, they could not miss this opportunity. Therefore, Augmented Reality is also used in both online and offline shopping. Businesses are using this technology to provide personalised assistance to shoppers. They help clients to choose the right product in few seconds. Customers can check available sizes and views without leaving the changing room or house.
Even the manufacturing industry is taking advantage of AR. In the development process you cannot afford a single mistake as it will cost you a lot. New technology brings together physical, real-life objects with virtual objects to increase operational efficiency. It also helps to reduce costs and improve proactive maintenance. Managers can easily make the right decisions and employees can act effectively.
Many companies are actively using AR in marketing activities. Have you heard of the exceptional experience provided by one of soft drink manufacturing companies in London bus stops? They installed AR technology in a bus shelter, making it appear as UFOs and other objects were headed straight into London streets. As a result, a video of the bus stops with AR attracted over 6 million views on YouTube.
Nowadays, people will stop and look at AR experiences. However, the more popular it becomes. Eventually, it will become mainstream. Consequently, the more thoughtful approach needs to be implemented to catch customer’s attention, impress the audience and pass the right message.
So what can we do as a business operating in industrial automation and energy management?
At Schneider Electric we are developing play rooms or, as we call them, Innovation Hubs across the world to show customers our solutions. In some of them, for instance, Coventry, United Kingdom, we have developed an AR tour. Customers can request to experience the self-guided tour with AR using tablet at our Coventry site.
By Darja Aleksejeva, Digital Marketing Engineer at Schneider Electric
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