While the mainstream consumer market waits for cool augmented glasses to arrive from Magic Leap, or maybe even Snap Inc. (Spectacles 2.0??), AR headset maker DAQRI and its business customers are finding new, money-saving and time-saving use cases for the technology today.
A recent example comes by way of Siemens Energy Services, in Toul, France. The company deployed DAQRI Smart Helmets at one of its power plants to help train its operations and maintenance staff. AR applications guide the employees through hands-on training programs and enable them to call a remote expert for further instruction.
The Smart Helmets also help employees at the plant communicate with machines within the facility. By connecting the device to the control systems of the plant, employees can then monitor vital statistics for the location's various machinery.
And the AR success stories from companies like Siemens in the enterprise market are becoming much more commonplace in recent months. Ford, Porsche, Renault, John Deere, DHL, Boeing, and General Electric are just a few of the companies that have either begun to fold AR into their operations or have already yielded positive results from AR in terms of productivity.
But DAQRI in particular has made its way into some organizations in several unexpected ways.
For example, the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians has begun using DAQRI Smart Glasses to close the gap between its high rate of employment and the high demand for skilled workers in the state. AR is helping the group to train job candidates on needed trades, such as electricians.
Further west, the City of Los Angeles Fire Department has begun using DAQRI Smart Glasses to assist maintenance employees to repair headsets used by fire personnel to communicate in the field. With an exploded view of a 3D model, employees can follow step-by-step animations that help them figure out how to repair and reassemble the devices, which cost $350 a piece.
According to the Joyce Edson, the assistant general manager for City of Los Angeles' information technology agency, the relationship between the city and DAQRI was struck at a local conference, where DAQRI demonstrated its technology.
So while the consumer market appears to be somewhat slow to adopt AR via mobile platforms like ARKit, as businesses, municipalities, and other organizations continue learn about the benefits of augmented reality, we can expect to hear and see more stories like these in the coming months.