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Capgemini: Immersive tech will soon be mainstream in business

Sep 13
Tags: Capgemini
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Capgemini: Immersive tech will soon be mainstream in...

Immersive technologies such as augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) are set to become a key part of business operations in the next three years, according to a new report from the Capgemini Research Institute.

The study highlighted the improved efficiency, productivity and safety that these innovations can deliver for enterprises.

Exceeding expectations

Based on a survey of more than 700 executives in the automotive, manufacturing and utilities sectors, the research showed that more than four out of five companies (82 per cent) currently implementing AR/VR are experiencing benefits that are meeting or exceeding their expectations.

Exactly half of businesses that were not yet using these technologies had plans to begin doing so within the next three years.

Nearly half (46 per cent) of respondents said immersive tech will become mainstream within their organisations in the next three years, while 38 per cent said a timeframe of three to five years is more realistic.

When it comes to the unique capabilities of these innovations, the findings suggested that AR - while more complex to implement - is seen as more beneficial than VR.

AR can boost productivity by streamlining workflows. The report gives the example of technicians at Porsche using AR glasses to project step-by-step bulletins and schematic drawings across the line of vision.

One of the key abilities of VR is to improve safety and efficiency. An example of this is Airbus using the technology to make digital mock-ups a part of the production process, enabling assembly workers to view 3D models of aircraft under production. As a result, the time required for inspection dropped from three weeks to three days.

Other key findings showed that, in the automotive, manufacturing and utilities sectors, VR and AR are most commonly used for maintenance, design and assembly.

The US and China are leading the way in use of these methods, innovating and adopting more rapidly than their counterparts in countries such as France, Germany and the UK.

Lanny Cohen, chief innovation officer at Capgemini, said: "Immersive technology has come a long way in a short time and will continue to evolve. Faced with stiff competition from aggressive investors in the US and China, businesses need to streamline investment to seize the long-term growth potential this technology offers.

"To drive the highest business value from AR and VR, companies need a centralised governance structure, proofs of concept that are aligned with business strategy, and to be able to drive innovation and employee change management."

Realising the benefits

There are barriers to the growth of immersive tech in business, most notably shortages of in-house expertise and insufficient back-end infrastructure to support its adoption.

Capgemini highlighted some key strategies to support the rollout of AR and VR, including investment in talent to enable future growth. A substantial majority (93 per cent) of early achievers in this space have invested heavily in agile, in-house expertise.

Businesses were also encouraged to focus on the right use cases for VR and AR, before testing the applicability of these technologies to real-world scenarios.

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Image: Popartic via iStock

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