AR and VR are more than real [6 cases overview]


Augmented and virtual reality (AR and VR) became casual words in our daily life ever since the mobile game Pokémon Go was launched and made a huge buzz in every corner of the planet. Altogether, this outstanding AR game was downloaded more than 100 mln times in its first month, earning $10mln per day on the peak of its popularity.


Yet, in the market, AR and VR are still very much in their first stage.

AR and VR

Pic: Four stages of tech market development


A recent report from IDC claims that the worldwide revenue for both AR and VR markets will grow from $5,2 billion in 2016 to more than $162 billion in 2020.


Moreover, the AR/VR facilities are not limited with gaming and media consumption only. There are huge opportunities for AR and VR in every market from retail to healthcare.


Still, one point to highlight is that, while VR rockets the gaming industry, more approachable (from the monetary and development point of view) AR has found its steady position in other spheres.


Let’s have a look at different industries and the cases of successful implementation of AR and VR technologies.






With AR, retail business can offer to a customer a completely different environment of interaction with the product, inside or even outside the store. Except the enrichment of the customer interaction, it also boosts company’s market presence and sales.


“77% of shoppers want to use augmented reality to see product differences such as a change in color or style.”
– Retail Perceptions


Case 1. Converse

Converse AR app

How it works
A customer selects any shoe from the Converse catalog, points the phone on his/her foot and receives a visual look just as if you were wearing it. Then, a customer can either share the “trying” with their friends on Facebook or purchase the shoe directly from the app.




Case 2. Ikea

Ikea catalogue with AR

How it works
The AR technology embedded into the app allows customers to have a 3D vision of Ikea’s pieces of furniture in their homes. Thus, the planning process has become much easier and more accurate for the customers, as they can virtually place sofa, table, chair, etc. straight into the desired place in their room.





There is a huge hidden potential of AR and VR technologies for the travel industry:


•  Travel agencies: engage the customers with a virtual journey in different corners of the planet and facilitate their choose of a suitable tour package:


Case 3. Thomas Cook

AR in tourism

How it works
Europe’s biggest tour operator Thomas Cook was the first one to offer in-store VR to their customers.


Launched in January 2015, the unique VR experience generated flights and hotel booking £12k in UK and Germany in 3 months. Besides, received 40% return on investment.



• Hotels: show the interior appearance, types of rooms and room views;


Airlines: simulate pilot-experience (can be also used for tutorial), select a seat before booking, experience add in-flight entertainment potential and more:


Case 4. Qantas


How it works
Australian airline Qantas has found the solution of raising customer’s satisfaction rate by giving passengers access to a variety of virtual experiences and games straight from their seats during their flight.



Education & Healthcare


There is a variety of ways that education institutes can use AR and VR. The technology offers great potential in different class areas, making the content come alive in the classroom:


• History and astronomy classes could transport students to ancient cities and universe places, and learn about the outer life in great details.


• Medicine students can go inside the human body to simulate any real life medical situation.


Case 5. Western University

 AR in medicine


How it works
Western University of Health sciences integrated Oculus Rifts to take the students inside the human body on a microscopic level and support with a guided narration.




• Design and architecture students can leverage AR and VR by means of projecting 3D objects. The technology recognizes the hand movement and repositions the objects or their parts with simple arm motion.


The idea of AR and VR integration in education follows the desire to create a stronger educational experience. Traveling inside the human body or investigating the world parts is much more memorable than reading about it. Besides, it gives the experience that is more practical to the students.






Museums, art galleries, concert halls across the globe are often preoccupied with the need to advertise their offerings in order to attract more visitors and viewers. By implementing new technologies of AR and VR, some institutes have already succeeded in performing this goal.


• History museums could leverage the technology by “bringing to life” the bones of the primitive and ancient animals;


• Galleries and museums add context to objects. With AR the objects can share the additional information with the visitors: what an object was used for, by whom and how was created, and much more;


• Teleport the visitors of museums into recreated world.


Case 6. British Museum

VR in museum

How it works
With the VR technology, the Museum transports the visitors into the Bronze Age roundhouse, augmenting their experience with virtual objects from the collection.
The year it was launched (2015/16) was the Museum’s most successful year. About 80% of the respondents rated the VR activities as “Good” or “Very good”, leaving positive remarks on the received experience.



• Add an emotional connection to the orchestra music. Engage the viewers of the show/concert with additional 3D animation by means of AR technology.



In a Nutshell…


AR and VR market takes shape through 2016 and beyond. We are sure that in the closest time different industries would start transforming the environment, offering new solution of interaction with the customers.


Read also: 6 Ideas to Incorporate Loyalty Program in Your Mobile App


The companies that succeed to be among the first one to offer such a unique experience to their customers, would take the plum and outstand the competitors.


How would you like to use AR and VR in your business? Or maybe you know a bright example of successful incorporation of these technologies? Share with us your thoughts in the comments.
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