We have seen some amazing leaps forward in 2016 with both virtual and augmented Reality. The Oculus Rift was recently released and had a huge impact on how people now view video games and Virtual Reality, from it's successful Kickstarter campaign that raised over two million dollars to Facebook buying the company, Oculus Rift has made a giant impact on the virtual and augmented Reality market. Meanwhile, Pokemon GO!, an augmented reality phone app based on the popular Pokemon series has over 100 million downloads since it's release and is making over 10 million dollars a day in revenue.
While the Oculus and Pokemon Go! may be leading in their respective markets that does not mean they are the only players on the field. The PlayStation VR has seen a huge success with it's launch in 2016, as did the HTC Vive, both are a industry standard in the current Virtual Reality market. The PlayStation VR alone now how a library of 27 games in just it's short existence. While the Vive 2 is just around the corner which could support wireless capabilities, and improved room-scale technology that allows you to move around inside a virtual space while also moving freely around in your own room.
In the Augmented Reality field we have games coming out like Clandestine: Anomaly where it imminently tells you that you cell phone has been hacked, the game places you at the center of an alien invasion which uses location based AR similar to that of Pokemon GO! With an inter-galactic conflict on your hands the only one that can save the world is you. This type of first person immersion based game play is how the AR market will thrive, it captures the audience and makes for exciting game play.
Video games however are not the only applications for augmented and virtual reality technology, Microsoft revealed their Hololense along side a Minecraft demonstration. In the demo people could interact with a virtual space and yet still see the world around them. While it was still a game they were showing off the practical uses to this technology could be endless, an architect could make full scale three dimensional models of their design and show case it to their clients. A doctor might be able to one day take a three dimensional scan of their patient and see inside of them in real time with the hololense. The possibilities are endless with this new and exciting technology. In the future movies may well be filmed in VR so the the viewer feels like they are totally immersed in the movie, there have already been some YouTube videos that take advantage of the technology!
Whole the future looks bright to these technologies, inevitably the hype will die down, the only way to keep moving forward with this technology is new innovations that push the boundaries of our imagination and continue to capture the excitement of the majority. We must imagine a world with Star Trek style holo decks, as long as we continue down our current path of development for augmented and virtual reality the fiction will be come reality.