Virtual Reality has been breaking mainstream and gaining more traction over recent years. The idea of “VR” has come a long way in technology and use. My first experience with VR was the Nintendo Virtual Boy in the fall of 1995. Now we have devices like the Oculus Rift using PC’s to deliver much more immersive visuals and interaction. We also have PlayStation VR, making the experience accessible in console form. Now we have companies finding new and innovative ways to utilize this tech. Now companies are utilizing the tech to do much more than just entertainment. Black Box VR is utilizing the tech to challenge and keep us engaged and enjoying our workouts. 360 Immersive is using the technology to create training programs for industry like law enforcement, medical and emergency services.
Augmented Reality (AR), an overlay of imagery on what we naturally see, is something being sought out by big names like Microsoft and Apple. Microsoft has already released the HoloLens, the hardware capable of creating imagery we perceive with what is naturally there. Apple has been more quietly including support for VR/AR in its operating system and iOS as well as development kits. Previously Apple acquired Vrvana, an AR goggles company, in 2017. Tim Cook previously stated the hardware didn’t exist yet to create the hardware needed for AR “in a quality way”. With the recent purchase of Akonia Holographics this may be changing.
There’s no official information on what could be coming but Apple certainly has the right pieces in the right places. Tim Cook’s comment on Apple’s plans for AR, “I don’t want to say what we may do, but I could not be happier with how things are going right now.”