Virtual and Augmented Reality Today Are Like the Internet in ‘95 (Video)

Virtual and Augmented Reality Today Are Like the Internet in ‘95

Some say virtual and augmented reality will be an integral part of our everyday lives within 10 years. But what does this market look like today? Is it hype or a business with real potential?

When clients and business partners ask me about the current state of the virtual and augmented reality (VR/AR) markets, I usually draw the comparison with the Internet in 1995.

Back then – in the era of desktop computers and dial-in modems – it was hard to imagine where “this new Internet thing” would take us more than 20 years later. Check out this epic TV interview from ‘95, in which Bill Gates tries to explain the benefits of the Internet and everyone just laughs.

The same happened with the introduction of the mobile phone and about any major technology shift in recent history. When faced with change, people tend to think within the boundaries of what they already know. The first cars were referred to as “horseless carriages,” the predecessors of today’s smartphone were dubbed “portable telephones” and in ’95 websites looked more like brochures, lacking all the interactive features that we are so familiar with today. Only as time progressed, people were able to understand the unique benefits of these innovations.

That was ’95. Now, let’s take a closer look at the current status of the VR/AR market.

Hype or Serious Business?

In our 2017 market research “Hype or Serious Business?”, for which we surveyed 613 developers and users of VR/AR, we used our experiences with the Internet to better understand the recent developments in this young industry. When the Internet emerged we learned that the value chain can be separated into three segments: infrastructure, tools & platforms and content. Only when these segments are developed and optimized, added value is created for the end-user.

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Coen Sanderik, Business Developer at Brabant Development Agency (BOM), will talk about “Virtual- Augmented reality in Industry 4.0: Hype or serious business?” next week, at the Intelligent Sensor Networks Conference, at High Tech Campus Eindhoven.