• Dakota Brouillard

Why Virtual/Augmented Reality is the Next Technology to Invest In

Updated: Dec 13, 2020

If you’re anything like me, you’re always looking to the future in terms of technology and where the money is. While virtual and augmented reality have been part of the conversation for the last couple of decades, it’s become more tangible in the last few years. Let’s take a look at the many reasons why VR and AR are poised to take-over the tech world, and change the way we envision technology.

VR and AR in Gaming

With the most recent development of the Quest and Quest 2, Oculus has helped redefine how we see Virtual Reality headsets in the general consumer aspect. Prior to the Quests, most people interested in Virtual reality gaming, needed a PC powerful enough to run all the back-end computing needed to play in the virtual realm.

Oculus’s Quest sought to change that, being the first stand-alone VR headset that took care of everything natively. Equipped with rechargeable batteries, the Quest eliminated the need to be tethered to a powerhouse PC, and independently handled everything needed to genuinely appreciate the developments being made to virtual reality gaming. The already immersive experiences were further heightened, as you could now “game-on-the-go,” sharing experiences with anyone who’d listen.

From Minecraft mobile to Pokémon Go, augmented reality has also solidified its hold on mobile gaming. Seeing the digital world as an overlay onto the material, and very real one feels like something out of a poorly written 80’s sci-fi flick. Afterall, who hasn’t wished they good build their dream home in real life with the same ease as the one they built in Minecraft?

VR and AR In Professional Formats

Even more importantly, both VR an AR have played increasingly important roles in the professional environment. No other headset represents a more perfect example of this than Microsoft’s Hololens and Hololens 2. While originally crafted as a mixed reality headset for the gaming world, Hololens has quickly shifted its focus to more professional aspects across the board.

Imagine you’re an assembly line worker whose machine just went down and you need to repair it at the fastest possible rate in order to get back to work quickly. Through your Hololens, you can see where a bolt sheered by a large red indicator flashing in front of you down the line. You see the broken piece, and can order a direct replacement right through the glasses, or even get an already catalogued replacement part in the building, coupled with schematics on the fastest way to replace it.

Or, taking a trip over to the medical world, a doctor whose patient is experiencing some sort of pain. He can access the patient’s files right in front of him, and in even more extreme situations, see what’s going on behind the scenes right there! Laying x-rays over the patient’s actual leg, abnormalities become more obvious, and allow doctors to become even better at their jobs! Similar to the X-ray itself, augmented and virtual reality are more tools to do the job proficiently.

The current iteration of virtual and augmented reality is arguably in its infancy stage. With the help of Covid-19, the race to implore a more digital work environment has gained traction. With big players jumping into the VR/AR market (like Apple with their Apple Glass coming in the near future) it’s only a matter of time before every household utilizes the technology to its fullest.

It won’t be long before you log into your virtual headset, to sit in your virtual office, the same way you’d clock in at a workplace. Personally, I’m excited to see how further developments in the sector will shape our future work environments, and what kind of impact it has on society at large.