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SME Media: Karen Haywood Queen – January 30, 2020

Big Savings, Quick ROI materialize as a result of the augmented reality industry

Imagine using tools and content from the augmented reality industry and achieving savings of over a million dollars in just the first day. That’s the example given by Karen Haywood Queen in her comprehensive article for SME Media, in which she describes how ScopeAR, a company helping teams at Lockheed Martin build critical equipment for NASA spacecraft, prevented an engineer from placing the wrong module in a key location — an error that would have destroyed a million-dollar piece of sheet metal. That’s an incredible Return-on-Investment, and that was only the first day of the teams using AR!

Nor is Lockeed Martin alone. Airplane manufacturers around the world have also realized that they can speed up key tasks such as measuring holes in key components of the plane — moving from hundreds of identifications to literally thousands. This may seem trivial, but the reality is doing so can literally triple the amount of airplanes that a company can build — from one a month to three.

The main competitor to AR? Doing it the old way. Scope AR CEO Scott Montgomerie pointed out that organizations are sometimes just more comfortable doing things the way they’ve always done them, even if there’s clear evidence that the augmented reality industry can enhance business operations and drive growth. But when the technicians and engineering staff are seeing things clearly, the ROI provided by AR is as obvious as an image floating in front of your face.

AR has also proven to be easy enough to use that even less tech savvy people can use it — older generations and younger people alike. Therefore, engineers fully deployed on AR in less than 24 hours. People who started using technology from the augmented reality industry early on are definitely reaping the benefits: it’s easier to cut down mistakes because it’s so easy to visualize what actually needs to be done — you’re seeing it literally in front of you, rather than having read or remember complicated text. This is light years from the old world of trying to turn a two dimensional idea into a 3D reality: the ability to communicate and describe the finished object using actual space and dimensions is a game changer.

Incredible Savings for NASA  – and the augmented reality industry is only getting started

The article proceeds to describe several more use cases where the augmented reality industry has saved money and enhanced key projects, often supplanting VR with AR (“why not have the real object present, with the annotations and context needed to train the workforce?”) The point is also made that AR is much more immersive; rather than zoning out in the middle of a presentation, people stop checking phones and instead envision how they plan to use what they’re being taught in their day-to-day work.

And finally, the augmented reality industry has had a major impact on careers: people have chosen their next company based upon whether AR is supported, and some have even decided to postpone retirement because they are energized by this new tool in their professional arsenal! Clearly, the adoption of AR is only getting started, and will continue to have a major impact on enterprises worldwide.

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