Augmented reality (AR) was one of the biggest trends at the recent Pacific Design & Manufacturing show. With growing interest in Internet of Things (IoT) applications more and more companies are seeking AR as an enterprise solution to make visual use of the the massive amounts of incoming data.
In a report released this month, ABI Research predicts that AR will hit an inflection point in 2018 and grow to a $98 billion market by 2021, with energy, manufacturing, and logistics verticals accounting for the largest market shares. Eric Abbruzzese, Senior Analyst at ABI Research, said, "2018 will be the year all verticals experience a significant jump in AR adoption rates...This is due to a congruence of three factors: significant time in market for pilot phases and small deployments to provide success indicators, greater breadth and depth of use case support through platforms, and an overall more mature market in terms of deployments, integrations, and usage."
Many suppliers are already working at the forefront of this, with use cases emerging across a number of industries from aerospace and automotive to healthcare.
Pacific Design & Manufacturing featured a number of exhibitors both directly and indirectly working to implement AR technology into the enterprise space. Here are some of the top companies worth watching in the years ahead.
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1.) Scope AR
Headquartered in Canada, Scope AR focuses on AR for creating “smart instructions” and live video support calling solutions. The company's goal is to leverage AR to make the jobs of technicians and workers, both in the factory and on the field, simpler.
Back in November the company announced a partnership with Caterpillar to provide live support for Caterpillar dealers in repairing, troubleshooting, and maintaining equipment. Scope AR's Remote VR technology uses an AR headset (like Microsoft Hololens) or even a tablet or smartphone to overlay annotations, 3D models, and contextual cues onto live video, while also allowing for live audio and video connection. Essentially a field technician could connect to someone on-site for real-time support.
Scope AR has also recently unveiled its WorkLink software, which allows companies to create their own AR-based smart instructions for a variety of tasks from installation to maintenance. The platform requires no coding experience and smart instructions can be created in a manner of hours without the need for a separate team or outsourcing.
2.) OPS Solutions
Michigan-based OPS Solutions is bringing AR into manufacturing assembly, training, inspection, and quality control with its Light Guide Systems (LGS). The LGS is a system that overlays interactive projections onto any object placed underneath it. The projections provide cues, instructions, and even error checking and the system is capable of recognizing objects and the user's hand movements in order to ensure tasks are being completed