If you’re considering launching an AR or VR startup, which ideas are the best ones to go for? Join us as we look at the best AR startups and the top VR startups to take you into the new year and beyond. So far, we’ve taken a look at lots of different AR and VR startup ideas that you can work on this year, from marketplaces to the Internet of Things. Whatever technology interests you, we have the startup idea to match!
In this blog, we are going to look at AR and VR startup ideas to work on this year. How can you use these technologies to create a startup idea that everyone wants to get involved in?
We’ll also be listing ten of the best AR and VR startup ideas to give you some inspiration. From museums to doctors’ surgeries, read on to find out more.
What are VR and AR?
Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) are technologies that enhance the world we live in, or alternatively, replace it entirely.
While both technologies have been around for decades, their use has skyrocketed in the past ten years. This is because the tech used has become more openly available, as well as a lot cheaper. Rather than buying a virtual reality headset that can cost hundreds of dollars, you can now make your own out of cardboard!
It’s estimated that by 2024, there will be 1.73 billion augmented reality users across the world, a staggering increase of 293% since 2019.
Why are VR and AR great startup ideas? They have the potential to add a lot of value to people’s lives, whether in the workplace or at home. Plus, with 84% of the global population now owning a smartphone, that’s a huge audience that you can target!
As we’ve covered VR and AR in previous articles, we won’t go into too much detail about what they are and how they can be used here. However, if you’d like to know more about the differences and similarities, we recommend checking out our AR and VR in the eCommerce blog.
What is a mixed reality startup?
You may have heard of mixed reality as well as augmented and virtual reality. What is this, and how can you apply mixed reality to your startup?
As you may have guessed, mixed reality is a combination of AR and VR, with physical and digital objects interacting in real-time.
As an example of mixed reality in use, it could be argued that Pokémon Go is a mixed-reality mobile app. It uses AR to add Pokémon into a real-life environment, and users of the app can interact with them by throwing a Pokéball!
Mixed reality can be used in a variety of different industries. For example, Microsoft HoloLens can be used in the medical industry to teach students anatomy, letting them interact with different parts of the body in 3D.
The 10 best AR and VR startup ideas for this year
Now that you know a little more about augmented reality, virtual reality, and mixed reality, you’re probably keen to know how they can be applied to a startup business.
Here are our top AR ideas and VR startup ideas for this year, as well as a few ways these different technologies can be used.
- Clothing and fashion
- Food and food delivery
- Child and pet care
- In the workplace
- Social media
Whether enjoying sports in a football stadium or in a bar with friends, AR and VR can help enhance the experience this year.
Augmented reality can be used to guide fans to their seats and provide them with entertainment. And that’s used while they are waiting for the game to start.
Most importantly, it can provide supporters with valuable statistics and insight during the game. In 2021, the Chicago Bulls launched its StatsZone app, which visualizes statistics and lets viewers see stats for games going back five years.
AR and VR can help athletes become better at their chosen sports too. VR can be used to help them practice when they can’t make it to the training venue, and AR can be used to monitor and track their performance.
2. Clothing and fashion
Smart clothing is a great option if you’re looking for a modern AR or VR-inspired startup idea. You can now get t-shirts and sweatshirts with prints on them, which trigger unique special effects when viewed on Instagram.
As well as AR filters, shoppers can use augmented reality to see how clothes will look on them before they buy. We’ll look at this in a bit more detail later.
3. Food and food delivery
COVID-19 and the lockdown saw an increase in the number of takeaways we order. In the UK, people are now spending a quarter more on food deliveries than they were pre-pandemic.
VR and AR can not only be used to train staff to prepare food but can help customers decide what food they want to eat before they order.
They can even tell customers what ingredients and calorie counts are in different dishes, helping those with food allergies as well as people who are on a diet.
If you’re planning a day out in your nearest town or city, AR and VR can provide you with lots of additional information. Augmented reality can be used to provide fun facts about buildings and places of interest, adding lots of extra value to your tour.
Many museums now use VR to provide immersive and unique exhibitions. For example, the Natural History Museum in London created ‘Hold the World’, a virtual reality experience where visitors could go on a tour with legendary naturalist Sir David Attenborough.
Virtual reality also gives people an opportunity to check out museums that they may not usually be able to get to. Imagine visiting the Louvre, The Museum of Modern Art, and the Sistine Chapel, all in one day!
5. Child and pet care
Looking after young children and pets can be hard work, as any parent or pet owner will know! AR and VR can be used to not only save time on tasks but keep your little ones and furry friends safe.
For example, smart glasses could be used to watch kids or pets in the garden while you are working at home, or raise an alert if they leave a particular room. Augmented reality can be used to read animal expressions and see if they are bored, hungry, or tired, or teach children how to brush their teeth properly.
Virtual reality can even be used to keep children entertained on long journeys or immerse them in their favorite educational show.
We’re all buying more online than ever before, with 900 million more online shoppers than there were in 2020.
The great thing about virtual reality and augmented reality is that they can be used to help people see if products are right for them. This not only increases the chances of them making a purchase but also helps reduce the risk of products needing to be returned. As an example, when Macy’s launched their AR app for trying on clothing, return rates reduced from about 7% to 2%.
How can shoppers use VR and AR in eCommerce? They can see how furniture will look in their living room, check out a car showroom from the comfort of their own home and try out different shades of eyeshadow. The possibilities are endless!
AR can also be used when shopping in the real world too. Customers can point their phones at a product to find out more about it, giving them all the information they need to make that all-important purchase. If you plan to offer an omnichannel experience, this can help you provide consistent customer service.
7. In the workplace
Have you ever been to a boring meeting? Of course, you have! AR and VR can be used to make boardroom meetings feel a lot more interesting.
AR can be utilized to identify participants in a meeting, create pop-up presentations, translate attendees speaking another language, and provide key facts about guest speakers. And of course, don’t forget the virtual business cards!
Businesses can take advantage of virtual reality to help staff meet wherever they are in the world. In 2021, Mark Zuckerberg officially launched Horizon Workrooms, a space where teams can connect over VR.
Treating the world as a big game and giving people awards for particular achievements can have lots of positive effects. For example, nearly three out of every four employees say gamification inspires them to work harder!
AR and VR-inspired startup ideas can help push gamification to new levels this year. For example, AR can be used to quickly see how you stack up against your nearest rivals and help you visualize your progress over time.
9. Social media
Augmented reality and virtual reality are already commonly found on social media platforms. For example, the filters on Snapchat and Instagram use AR to identify your facial features and apply the filter correctly.
However, as our use of social media grows, so will the demand for AR and VR startup ideas. For example, AR can be used to add additional functionality to videos, entice users to buy products, and let people catch up with their nearest and dearest.
It’s estimated that nearly half of social media users in 2022 will use AR on their platform of choice, so be sure to take advantage!
Virtual reality has been used in the field of healthcare for quite some time now. In the 1990s, it was used to simulate colonoscopies, so medical students could learn the procedure without operating on a patient.
Fast forward thirty years, and the scope of VR and AR in the healthcare industry has opened up even more. Like in the Microsoft HoloLens video we linked above, it can be used to teach anatomy to students, as well as explain to patients how a disease may affect various parts of their body.
Also, quite popular AR/VR usage becomes in Interior design, mainly among mortgage agents. For more details about AR/VR technology in interior design, check this article.
In conclusion – how will you use augmented reality and virtual reality in your startup idea?
We hope this article has given you valuable insight into the top AR and VR startup ideas for this year.
It’s estimated that there will be 10 billion different AR and VR applications by 2024. While the landscape is a competitive one, this technology can be profitable if you have a great idea.
As we always say, be sure to do your market research, look at what your competitors are doing and identify your startup’s unique selling point. And remember, the sooner you can get your product to market, the more of an advantage you will have. Creating a minimum viable product (MVP), or a basic version of your final product, is critical.
For an example of one of the most successful virtual reality startups around, take Oculus. The VR headset startup was founded in 2012, raising $2.4 million on Kickstarter, ten times more than the brand anticipated. Two years later, Oculus was acquired by Meta Platforms (then known as Facebook) for an incredible $2.3 billion.
Need extra support with your VR or AR startup idea this year? You are launched can help
We have years of experience in the technology industry. If you have an excellent idea for an AR or VR service that can help revolutionize people’s lives, we can help you take it to the next level.
We use the lean startup methodology to help get your tech to market as soon as possible, giving you the edge in an extremely competitive market. As well as helping you launch your AR or VR idea, we can help you get funding and grants in your country of origin too.
Contact us today to find out more and see how we can help turn your idea into (virtual) reality.