The confluence of IoT & AR holds the promise for more revenue, cost savings, and better transparency. Still, what are the details behind this trend and why should companies look into forwarding a consolidated IoT & AR strategy? Advances in augmented reality (AR) make it possible to tap into the full potential of IoT initiatives. It is thanks to AR applications that the massive volumes of data generated by IoT endpoints become tangible. This is how they enhance worker performance.
Why IoT & AR Belong Together
Even with the newest advances in processing IoT data, companies continue to struggle to remain on top of data volumes. The results are slow processing times and missing out on important insights because the data is stuck in silos. Visualising the data is a separate challenge. Often, a consolidated strategy for reporting on data from multiple heterogeneous endpoints or locations is lacking. AR addresses these challenges by making the data more visible, accessible, and interactive.
In the world of AR, digital information co-exists with its physical environment. It is overlaid with the physical world in such a way that it appears to be seamlessly embedded in its settings. In this way, interaction with the digital layer becomes an easy and intuitive way to tap into the data without extracting the physical world. Remote IoT devices collect data that organisations can leverage in the creation of digital twins. These, in turn, can be combined with AR devices. This way, users can interact with the data, improve design decisions and performance.
Employees are presented with the relevant data where they need it and when they need it.
It is an accelerated path towards taking action in a data-driven way and approaching tasks more efficiently. The combined IoT & AR approach is especially interesting in settings where employees take an active part in the decision-making process. Other scenarios include settings where they need the data to handle machines and equipment in specific ways.
New Work with IoT & AR
Combined IoT and AR applications are especially valuable when it comes to aggregating massive volumes of heterogeneous data types and consolidating these into a single source to generate decisions faster. At times, employees are expected to interact with environments where mission-critical assets are not visible. On other occasions, assets need to be attended to within their contexts, in real-time, to make decisions. This is where AR comes in.
Why Companies Benefit from IoT & AR
In industrial manufacturing, aerospace, logistics, and communications, IoT and AR help alleviate issues in asset management, maintenance, and beyond. Most companies combine a variety of AR devices in their operations, including smartphones, wearables, HMDs, Google Glass, and many others. AR makes it possible to visualise data quickly and easily. The data is presented as fully embedded within its contexts. AR thrives on interaction and helps decision-makers better understand and manage their environments by presenting the data in an intuitive way within multimedial, three-dimensional settings.
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Combined IoT & AR solutions are already revolutionising diagnostics, maintenance, and condition monitoring. Three-dimensional views and interactive visualisations allow specialists to analyse on the spot. Context-specific data is presented immediately and is readily consumable, effectively enhancing the human capacity for issue handling.
Why Employees Benefit from IoT & AR
But even non-specialist staff are benefitting from the combined forces of IoT & AR. They are now better equipped to handle tasks that were previously only accessible to experts. Overlaying dashboards with IoT data on simulated environments can help workers in handling machines, maintaining equipment, or getting trained on new procedures. The approach can come in handy in managing industrial devices, conducting repairs, or visualising machine performance in real-time without having to resort to human intervention.
Wearables also play a role as AR devices allow employees to instantly visualise data as they move through the shop floor or the storage facility. This way, they instantly generate insights on where to improve, where an issue might arise, where to find a component, or how to best manage the space.
A Path Towards Better Performance
Apart from obvious reasons such as convenience and enhanced visualisation capabilities, combined IoT and AR deployments can help organisations boost their KPIs in a variety of ways. Below is a breakdown of the tangible, business-relevant outcomes that a combined IoT and AR approach can bring to industrial enterprises:
IoT & AR technologies, when combined, can help organisations reduce costs and waste, manage downtime more effectively, enhance worker efficiency, and optimise just about any aspect of their operations. Each and every IoT & AR application contributes to this goal in that it reliably delivers context-relevant, real-time data to employees exactly where they need it in mission-critical settings. In this way, the majority of errors and required maintenance jobs are eliminated. And the need for human labor overseeing these tasks becomes minimal.
But it is not just about reducing unnecessary tasks or resources and cutting costs. IoT & AR are also about generating true value that is capable of pushing an organisation forward in unprecedented ways. IoT & AR add value in a variety of ways, both tangible and intangible. Examples include increased customer loyalty, a boost in customer satisfaction, and enhanced brand status. Added to these are tangible aspects such as improved safety and better working conditions on the shop floor.
Tapping into New Revenue Streams
Business objectives are also becoming a more pronounced aspect of IoT & AR deployments. Especially since streamlined operations, more efficiency on the shop floor, and accelerated decision-making ultimately translate into an increase in revenue. Further, the combined powers of IoT & AR make it possible for companies to not just stick to what they know. Now organisations are actively seeking creative paths towards unleashing new revenue streams. For example, companies can use their existing IoT & AR infrastructure to experiment with the development of new products, offer new services to their customers, or provide unique after-sales solutions.
About Record Evolution
We are a data science and IoT team based in Frankfurt, Germany, that helps companies of all sizes innovate at scale. That’s why we’ve developed an easy-to-use industrial IoT platform that enables fast development cycles and allows everyone to benefit from the possibilities of IoT and AI.