Everywhere, all around the world, people are talking about Extended Reality (XR) as an exciting state-of-the-art technology. Growing at an exponential rate, the technology is preparing the world for an alternate reality, one that is digital but in an extended dimension. 

Rolling back the clock, most technological revolutions have been in the 2-dimensional landscape. Be it the internet or the computers, crypto or blockchain, every technology that has brought a change, has been in the 2d space. However, as we live and experience the world in 3D, it is imperative to reimagine our digital ecosystem. This is where XR emerges as a critical and an a crucial technology. The fact that it engages all five senses of humans- vision, hearing, contact, smell, and taste, along with a layer of perspective as the ‘sixth’ sense, it is a technology that transcends digital experience. 

What is Extended Reality?

Extended Reality, or XR, is an umbrella of all existing and upcoming immersive technologies. It is a superset of Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR), and Mixed Reality (MR) technologies. All these extend the reality we experience today by blending the two worlds, hence creating an immersive experience.

Extended reality covers the spectrum of digitally-enhanced reality technology and, together with other components like Artificial Intelligence and the Internet of Things, enhances productivity and experience. Hence, to understand XR better, you can learn about Virtual, Augmented, and Mixed Reality here.

Journey of XR

XR was pioneered in the year 1838 when British scientist Sir Charles Wheatstone envisioned his 3D perspective with the concept of “stereopsis”, and further invented the Stereoscope. Notably, it was the first instance when more than one image was taken into use to create a 3D immersion.

Through the years, XR has seen the emergence of new immersive technologies and the evolution of existing processes. It has reached a wide range of industries that are seen pushing the technology to its potential. From the user’s perspective- XR has been opening up the next dimension of reality. Simply put, it is bringing virtual experiences to life while making humans a part of the digital interaction.

Experiences have been shifting from observational to experiential in recent years with respect to XR. Immersive mobile XR experiences have come up with the advent of robust processing, 5G, and edge computing. The 5G-XR  alliance is empowering an ecosystem with effective end-to-end solutions. Above all, it proves that the evolution of XR design and technologies is making it more mainstream for mass adoption.

XR: The Revolution

Extended Reality is revolutionizing any experience you can envision through your naked eyes. Be it simple everyday issues or complex and intricated industrial problems- XR is opening up doors for solutions never seen or discovered before.

Day-to-day Life

When an upcoming technology is discussed, it is often perceived as an illusive, mythical phenomenon created for overly-dramatized use cases.  However, despite XR being the most exciting space-age technology, it envisions value addition to daily life processes.

XR has numerous day-to-day applications that are changing how we live and socialize. With advanced XR products that enrich both our physical and digital experiences, activities like shopping, health assistance, travel and tourism, education and so much more will become more immersive and technologically convenient.

Industry 4.0

Digitisation of enterprises and businesses is the inevitable truth in today’s times. To support this, the digitalized industry era needs an experience that lives up to the idea of this industrial revolution. XR is one of the key enablers for the fourth industrial revolution where the barriers between the real and virtual will become more and more blurred. It works as a transition from the already existing technological processes to automated and smart mechanisms.

Revolutionising the education and training industry, XR is realigning the way manufacturing and other industries upskill their employees, making them industry-ready. In addition to the above, 3D industrial prototyping is further pushing the boundaries of perfection and effectiveness for complex production pipelines.

Much on the same lines, Augmented Reality (AR) and Mixed Reality (MR) have been augmenting the way monitoring and technical assistance are taken forward. With the real-time transmission of data and faster solutions for critical errors, these reality technologies have been transforming industries seamlessly. Moreover, as we see newer technologies emerging, it will be thrilling to see how the future shapes from here.

Boosting Career Opportunities

XR-based jobs are enjoying noteworthy growth because of the evolution of this cutting-edge tech. With global tech companies such as Meta, Apple, and Microsoft focusing and working towards an XR-first vision, opportunities related to development, design, and research are seeing the light. There are more than 5000 job openings in the industry and more are adding to the list with passing time. 

Even though the technology is in its early stages of application, the signs are affirmative to conclude that XR is the future of career avenues and jobs in the world. Hence, taking a leap of faith and making oneself well-versed with technology can help in the long run.

Not to forget, XR is also empowering content creators by helping them create a decentralised creator-centric economy. With the help of Metaverse, content creators will have enhanced Interaction, higher autonomy, and the freedom to explore the potential of the technology.

Future of Extended Reality

XR has just taken the rise in terms of adoption and integration. Given the growth graph, it is expected that it will soon become the norm wherein enterprises as well consumers would be using XR-oriented applications or usecases in the everyday life. 

As we celebrate World XR Day, we initiate the movement of growing the creators economy, empowering people with the skillsets necessary to build immersive experiences for XR. Let us all join this revolution and walk on the path of shaping the next generation of internet the way we imagine it to be.