eWEEKchat April 13: How AR and VR Will Impact Us All

This will be a particularly timely eWEEKchat conversation about a striking new technology in the nascent IoT age. Please join us.

On Wednesday, April 13, at 11 a.m. PDT/2 p.m. EDT/7 p.m. GMT, @eWEEKNews will host its 42nd monthly #eWEEKChat. The topic will be "How AR and VR Will Impact Us All." It will be moderated by Chris Preimesberger, who serves as eWEEK's editor of features and analysis.

Some quick facts:

Topic: "How AR and VR Will Impact Us All"

Date/time: April 13, 2016 @11 a.m. PDT/2 p.m. EDT/7 p.m. GMT

Moderator: Chris Preimesberger: @editingwhiz

Tweetchat handle: Use #eWEEKChat to follow/participate, but it's easier and more efficient to use real-time chatroom links.

Chatroom real-time links: We have two: http://tweetchat.com/room/eweekchat and http://www.tchat.io/rooms/eweekchat. Both work well. Sign in via Twitter and use #eweekchat for the identifier.

'How AR and VR Will Impact Us All'

Fueled by significant media interest in Facebook's multibillion-dollar investment in Oculus Rift to Samsung's impressive Gear products to Microsoft's HoloLens to Nokia's 360-degree OZO camera ball, virtual and augmented reality technology is piquing the imagination of millions of people worldwide.

All the processor companies—with Nvidia in the lead—are readying their wares for this potentially huge new market. All the camera and lens companies are stocking their warehouses; the gaming companies are all retooling their products for this immersive new tech.

Apple is deepening its involvement in augmented reality and virtual reality by hiring experts in both fields as it moves to find new markets to help the company maintain healthy revenue and profit streams as its iPhone sales flatten.

In its most recent business foray into AR and VR, Apple recently acquired Flyby Media, which contributed its image-recognition software to Google's Project Tango mapping efforts. So far, Apple has hired more than 100 people to look into the business market for AR and VR.

The gaming industry is already reaping major rewards in the VR sector, and the sky appears to be the limit on profitability. Gamers are drawn fully into the game environment itself, and by some descriptions it can be difficult to pull out of them, they're so enticing.

This is where tech rides the slippery slope. VR might be the 21st-century equivalent of gambling casinos, where some people get so caught up that they forget where they are and how many hours they've spent pulling the levers.

The difference between "excellent" VR and just "good" VR is tremendously important, one industry expert told eWEEK.

"The gaming industry already knows that the consumer will see these differences immediately and will gravitate only to the excellent VR providers," he said. "This can mean the difference between making someone sick to his/her stomach on a 'rollercoaster' ride or totally enjoying the experience with no dizziness or sickness."

Enterprises are testing and/or already using augmented reality systems in warehouses, for example, where forklift drivers wearing Google Glass-type headsets are able to read manifest-type information piped from the cloud directly to their glasses when they look at a container—or a stack of containers—on the floor.

In real estate, people looking for apartments, for example, will be able to simply walk down the street of the neighborhood where they want to live, use their AR glasses to look at the actual property, and subsequently obtain rental or purchase information on demand from the cloud. Much more efficient than looking at a newspaper or magazine ad.

These are just a few of the use cases and data points we'll talk about on April 13. We will pose questions such as:

--What do you personally see as the No. 1 business advantage of using AR and/or VR?

--Where do you see AR/VR impacting your own life in the next 12 to 24 months?

--What other companies do you know will become AR/VR players in 2016?

--Do you see, or do you not see, AR/VR becoming mainstream in 2016?

Join us April 13 at 11 a.m. Pacific/2 p.m. Eastern/7 p.m. GMT for an hour. Chances are good that you'll learn something valuable.

Chris Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger is Editor-in-Chief of eWEEK and responsible for all the publication's coverage. In his 13 years and more than 4,000 articles at eWEEK, he has distinguished himself in reporting...