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What is Extended Reality?

We tell you what it is, what it is and what is the estimated growth forecast for Extended Reality, the technology that will revolutionize the businesses of all industries by 2030.

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We tell you what it is, what it is and what is the estimated growth forecast for Extended Reality, the technology that will revolutionize the businesses of all industries by 2030.

Having a business meeting with your team in New York, chatting with a collaborator in China and checking how your company’s facilities are in Madrid could be possible in the next decade thanks to the rise of Extended Reality. This concept combines as an umbrella the three immersive techniques: Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR) and Mixed Reality. In this way, it constitutes a combination of real-virtual world and human-machine interaction.

Quickly recalling the meaning of these three concepts, Virtual Reality (VR) applications use headphones and helmets to fully submerge users in a computer simulated reality, receiving realistic sounds and images that involve the five senses to create a interactive virtual world. It has multiple applications in the field of health, educational level and of course, in the entertainment and gaming sector.

Augmented Reality (AR) opts for, instead of submerging users, relying on an already known device, usually the smartphone or tablet camera, to superimpose graphics and digital sounds in a real-world environment. Pokémon Go and Snapchat are some of the most popular exponents of this technology, which has made an especially deep impression in the retail sector.

On the other hand, the Mixed Reality (MR) is between the two previous ones, since it combines real and virtual worlds to create complex environments where the physical and digital elements can interact in real time. Like Augmented Reality, it superimposes synthetic content in a real-world environment; and like the virtual one, this content is interactive and users can manipulate digital objects in their physical space. A recent example is the Spectator View application, developed by Microsoft as a complement to the HoloLens.

Extended Reality will encompass everything in a future world in which people will interact with the real and virtual worlds transparently, without mentioning the different categories or their supporting technology. The term is designed to recognize the intersection of all these technologies. If we talk about forecasts, the growth of Extended Reality will multiply by eight only in the next five years, reaching an estimated market size of 209,000 million by 2022.

The following infographic shows the main figures around the increase of prominence and the success of Extended Reality in various industries. That revolution is expected to splash especially entertainment, marketing-offering immersive ways to interact with new products-training -to train pilots, chemists or firefighters, as well as doctors, who can practice with virtual patients-, the goods roots – potential tenants could see the properties in a virtual way – or remote work, allowing the visualization of data from anywhere in the world and removing the barriers.

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