With technology rapidly advancing, augmented and virtual reality elements are both set to become significant considerations, in a broad range of ways, with AR glasses enabling visual overlays on your real-world perspective, and VR headsets providing whole new, immersive connection opportunities.
Which will also open up a range of new opportunities for marketers - which is where this new report from Facebook comes in.
This week, Facebook has published a new, 28-page report on how AR and VR is evolving, and where it's headed, in terms of consumer interest, future applications, utility, and more.
You can download the full report here, but in this post, we'll take a look at some of the key highlights.
First off, Facebook outlines the key elements driving the next stage of AR/VR development, and where each is headed based on usage trends.
Past technology shifts, like mobile connectivity, have followed the same evolution, which points to both elements becoming significantly more influential, and valuable within everyday life, in the near future.
Indeed, Facebook says that 75% of all business owners expect to be utilizing AR and VR technology in the next two years, while global spending on AR and VR is set to rise 6x.
As you can see here, user adoption is also on the rise, with demand for AR content seeing solid demand, especially as more people turn to eCommerce and shopping online.
AR and VR technology could offer immersive solutions to close the gap between the online and in-store shopping experience, and already, more consumers are looking to such tools as a key way to boost their product discovery and brand connection process.
Also interesting, Facebook's data shows that English-language searches related to AR and VR on Facebook grew nearly twice as fast in emerging markets than in mature ones, again pointing to expanded potential.
As you can see here, though, interest is growing in every market, based on Facebook trends, underlining the fact that more immersive tech platforms will be key to future growth, and could open up whole new opportunities to connect with consumers, and boost promotions for your business.
As per Facebook:
"AR and VR could revolutionize how people engage with brands- and how brands engage with people. Imagine being able to meet one-on-one with famous clothing designers, seeing how lipstick bonds to lips by becoming part of the chemical makeup of the product or having a home reimagined by a brilliant creative director."
We're not there yet. AR tech is still advancing, while AR wearables are only just now making their first appearance. But the next big shift is coming, and that will open up a range of new opportunities, in a range of ways.
Some interesting elements to consider, and to potentially start factoring into your planning.
You can read Facebook's full "AR/VR: New dimensions of connection" report here.