The Augmented Reality of Modern Business
September 6, 2018
How VR and AR for business are moving communication forward.
It’s been 31 years since virtual reality (VR) first made its debut. Once a technology developed solely for entertainment and game playing, VR is making its growing power felt in sectors ranging from education to healthcare and staff training.
VR is an immersive experience which, as the name suggests, takes the user out of their actual world and into a fabricated one. Augmented reality (AR) is a neat blend of both. In a business environment for example, what was once a simple face-to-face call may be overlaid for participants with rolling data, images, project videos, or on-site tours.
When we consider that the essence of communication is making ourselves heard and understood, VR and AR have the potential to make us more aware and in tune with each other’s situation than ever before.
Here’s our look at some of the impressive changes these two technologies can bring to business communications.
Visual before virtual
If it’s visible and tangible, the human brain is instantly more engaged. VR and AR are ideal ways to benefit from this sensory favoritism and boost your chances of the audience being far more engaged with what you’re saying.
Data visualization can be a very emotional thing. That’s a massive plus in business where engagement with investors, company members, clients and customers is one of the keys to success. Touchscreen technology via apps of all kinds means business communications can literally be a hands-on experience.
VR especially has the potential to trigger empathy during communications. A stirring virtual presentation could inspire feelings of confidence. A moving one could help a charity make a far more compelling case.
Communication without limit
Every team member knows the pressure of getting to a meeting on time, but the more tech-minded company prefers their operation to stay ahead of the curve.
A virtual conference table has no limitation of time, space or attendees. Virtual communications offer an immediacy, intimacy, and ease that having to be there in person can’t match. No matter where CEOs, managers, and staff are in the world, anyone can be anywhere in the blink of an eye.
If a business is making a product proposal to a prospective client, or perhaps wishes to take them on a tour of a facility, AR can transport them there directly. Some of the world’s leading brands are taking customers on test drives for cars, showing them around factories, and letting them browse and shop for food or clothes.
Working from home and the end of language barriers
The flexibility conveyed upon communication by these advances is, in turn, passed along to the workplace itself. We mentioned how meetings and conference calls would be able to include absent staff. Employees are effectively always there, wherever their personal “here” may be.
The new realities could potentially eliminate the need for offices. Team members could be scattered around the city, the country, or the globe and contribute as much labor value in their pajamas as in their business attire.
Immediate translation during spoken calls is removing yet another barrier to business communication. Where once an interpreter would have been needed, potential business allies speaking different languages and can understand each other fully. Clients and markets that may once have presented hurdles can now be contacted and not only communicated with but engaged.
Knowing how to communicate is an art
Any new technology brings with it excitement and the need to experiment. These new takes on communication reality have great potential to enhance things, but they could also to get in the way. AR and VR should be used professionally and sparingly. It’s one thing to enlighten (and even entertain) your audience. It’s quite another to bombard them with so much simultaneous information that communication becomes a clutter.
Communication arguably has a prime factor: clarity. These new technical tools should be an aid toward that goal. A wrong word or gesture during business communications can have consequences. If you’re offering any degree of immersive experience, you run the risk of triggering the wrong emotion. With all the potential benefits tech is offering, it pays to remember there will be new pitfalls, too.
If you have an interest in the state of modern VR, you can stay up to date via the Virtual Reality Society. They have the latest news, reviews and expert insights.
There are two ways to classify the quantum leaps technology is making when it comes to business communications. Engagement has evolved into empathy thanks to VR and AR. For businesses, emotion has become a valuable ally while communication has evolved into greater collaboration.
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To see how we can help with your business communication needs contact us today.