Choosing an Augmented Reality Consulting Partner

8 minute read

July 31st, 2021

Rock Paper Reality

Augmented Reality (AR) – the process where digital images are superimposed on reality to create a rich, interactive experience where the real and virtual world intersect – is a technology still in its infancy, but becoming increasingly popular because of its near-limitless potential. COVID-19 is a major driver of this surge as businesses scramble to explore avenues to incorporate technology into their daily functions to keep operations running.

While the pandemic has forced a radical reorganization of business operations and functions, AR has powerfully reframed operating processes in a wide range of industry sectors – from logistics management and training medical students to displays in cars and designing products. This profound change in the way we work and live has spurred developments and growth in this sector to astonishing new heights. Statista recently published research findings that state that from roughly $3.5 billion in 2017, the augmented reality market is on course to rocket to over $198 billion by 2025.

AR technology that can be used as an interactive teaching tool in classrooms, or even to guide those with disabilities, proving that it has a solution for any application – it is simply up to your ingenuity and imagination to settle on the most appropriate application to enhance your current business offering.

Choosing the right partner as you embark on your exhilarating AR journey is essential if you want to better tap into the digital revolution and partake of the vast benefits it has to offer.

Start With Your Augmented Reality Project Budget

Choosing an experienced and reputable AR agency to help you develop industry-leading AR strategies that will drive brand awareness, customer engagement, and revenue growth is key as you embark on your augmented reality journey. It is important to note that the most expensive intervention does not necessarily translate into a solution. Each company’s needs are unique, and this applies to AR solutions as well. Doing your homework is thus crucial.

The right partner will help you navigate elements such as:

  • Development (Web-based AR and App-based)
  • 3D Modeling
  • Animations
  • Optimization
  • Testing

They will also reiterate the importance of always starting by assessing your budget for these projects. Due to the uniqueness of AR projects, flexibility within your budget is key, something a competent AR partner will be able to advise you on in more depth.

Establishing the parameters for your budget will involve due diligence on things like labor rates and equipment pricing. You don’t want to start a project only to discover halfway down the line that your allocated budget won’t meet the actual expenses.

A bird’s eye view of your budget and running expenses throughout the project is beneficial and can be achieved by classifying elements together based on how they are related or if they will use similar materials and processes. In this way, you can effectively oversee each step of the process at any stage.

Smart warehouse management system using augmented reality technology to identify package picking and delivery. Future concept of supply chain and logistic businessSmart warehouse management system using augmented reality technology to identify package picking and delivery. Future concept of supply chain and logistic business

Smart warehouse management system using augmented reality technology to identify package picking and delivery. Future concept of supply chain and logistic business.

Consider What Use Cases The Augmented Reality Consulting Partner Can Provide

Show Me Your Demo Reel

The beauty of augmented reality is that its flexibility provides solutions for the most complex tasks and for most applications.

Some of the documented case studies for augmented reality include:

  1. Intending travelers using AR customers to ‘experience’ their destination before they even leave for their holiday.
  2. Design professionals and architects can simulate proposed designs for clients and then, in consultation, make virtual changes before a project even commences.
  3. The medical industry can facilitate simulated training for students and professionals to practice techniques for surgeries using complex equipment.
  4. AR headsets and glasses are now being used in the building maintenance sector as they are a great way to simulate problems and troubleshoot solutions without the expense of on-site investigations.
  5. The entertainment sector benefits significantly from immersive AR experiences.

According to a 2019 State of Industrial Augmented Reality report, companies that have introduced AR initiatives in their operations have recorded dramatic gains in worker efficiency and quality while reducing the cost of their in-house training programs.

The report strongly recommends that companies looking to capitalize on AR opportunities should seek credible and reliable AR partners to accompany them on their AR journey. Such agencies should be solution-ready and help businesses build and integrate augmented reality experiences quickly and easily.

Some incredible case studies of AR include Unilever’s use of AR for remote assistance and knowledge sharing, Boeing’s use of the technology to wire an airplane, DHL Supply Chain’s use of AR to enhance warehouse operations, and Lowe’s introduction of augmented reality into their operations to make DIY applications easier and more user-friendly.

Evaluate Available AR Technologies

While some AR firms have extensive libraries of plugins or SDKs to speed up development and make it more user-friendly, others may not have access, but could still be positioned to develop the perfect AR solution for your environment.

These specialists will guide you on the digital content you need, help you understand the physical environment the user will navigate when using the app; and will then assist you in your path to delivering a more refined AR experience.

Evaluate Available AR Technologies

Source: Shutterstock

Establish a Project Strategy With Your Augmented Reality Consulting Partner

Committing to an AR strategy for your organization is long-term and is something you need to be invested in. For this reason, the best way to tackle your AR requirements is to stop before you start. That’s right, stop!

Stop and assess the potential impact AR will have on your product capabilities, your value chain, and most importantly, your customers. In addition, stop and evaluate how the AR you are looking to integrate will reinforce differentiation through functionality and ease of use. So, before you start, stop and assess whether or not your business will benefit from AR applications. Take time to evaluate all the options available and don’t just opt for the one you may have heard about or seen applied somewhere else. The reality is, your organizational needs are unique and as such, you need to take a deep dive before determining which applications will work best for your business.

Once satisfied with your available options, you can draw up your wish list. Decide if you want to manage the development and launch in-house, or if you need to find an AR agency that can get you to your end goal. We recommend the latter.

RPR – Your Rock Solid Partner For Your AR Strategy

Businesses across the globe are trying to find ways to stay competitive as consumers are looking for richer engagement points in their shopping experiences. AR, no doubt, will have a big impact on how companies compete. With 40% of consumers saying they would pay more for a product that they could customize in AR, augmented reality is a big consideration for customers.

AR is serving as the new interface between humans and machines. It will be a crucial piece of our future world, helping us to bridge the digital and physical divide — all while enabling humans to engage with technology in smart and interactive ways. Rock Paper Reality (RPR) can guide you through the development of your strategy and the execution of your AR project from the ground up. Our expert team and cutting-edge software will serve up a customized solution for your unique AR needs.

AR is no longer just about the technology. It’s about reimagining our world and creating meaningful and purposeful experiences that leverage technology. In the same vein, it’s not just about choosing an AR partner. It’s about redefining relationships and creating mutually beneficial opportunities for both partners. Get in touch with Rock Paper Reality today, and together, let’s develop your business’s ability to create a world-class AR experience.

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