With fast development of smartphones role in our life tech industry experts are looking for innovations capable of putting digital world to a new higher level. Virtual and Augmented reality, gaining billion dollars of investments, seem to be the next ‘big thing’.

 

Phenomenon of virtual reality

Its huge popularity virtual reality owes the film ‘The Matrix’. Telling a story about people living in completely simulated world ‘The Matrix’ had a huge impact on society’s mind and put the subject of virtual reality into the mainstream.  Since then this technology has been rapidly developing. In 2007 Google launched its Street View and after its success Google Cardboard was released. Then many huge companies started using this concept for their products, upgrading the technology. For example, Samsung has produced smartwatch Galaxy Gear.

So virtual reality along with augmented reality became widely used by people all around the globe, from NASA scientists to common Facebook users with its Oculus VR and Smashbox cosmetics consumers. Today the popularity of virtual reality has reached the highest level.

 

Big companies look into the future

Looking through the internet you will find a lot of posts about companies turning to virtual reality in their marketing plans. Surely, this process has been lasting for some years providing virtual and augmented reality with huge investments. Data shows  that for the last three years about 200 deals were signed and virtual and augmented reality companies gained more than $2.5 billion invested. These results are pretty impressive, but 2016 has already broken all records.

According to  Digi-Capital for first two months of the current year the amount of investments reached $1.1 billion. VR and AR companies have never gained a billion per one year, so these results are impressive as never before.

However, the tendency keeps growing. Investment for two quarters of 2016 made more than $2 billion. This fact shows the startling growth, as for the whole 2015 VR and AR had only $700 million invested.

AR / VR Investments. 2016

 

The main part of the money came from Magic Leap, a mixed reality company. Latest reports show that Magic Leap has invested nearly $800 million in Series C round of funding. This funding round was also joined by famous companies like Warner Bros, Fidelity,  Morgan Stanley, J.P. Morgan T. Rowe Price, Wellington Management Co. As in one of our articles we have already talked about rapidly growing Chinese interest in virtual reality the essential part of investments came from China’s e-commerce powerhouse Alibaba.

 

VR and AR to the masses

All these facts show that companies aim for making virtual and augmented reality more available for people. As eMarketer writes about 30 companies with $10 billion assets has associated in Venture Capital Alliance. Together they look for most relevant ways ‘to bring virtual reality to the masses’.

It is hard to find people without a smartphone in modern world. That is why it is the mobile type of VR and AR that is expected to be most popular. Analysts predict the Apple future in augmented reality. As iPhone 7 plus is equipped with dual-camera technology, experts suggest this is the last step before Apple joining virtual reality.

 

Digi-capital. AR / VR

 

No longer a science-fiction

Taking into account all the mentioned facts and statistics, it is easy to conclude that virtual and augmented reality is no longer something of the kind of science-fiction. Thanks to huge famous companies’ investments soon we may reach the date when every person will be able to try living in simulated world.

Although analysts predict VR and AR to gain $120 billion by 2020, it does not mean that mixed reality companies do not need more investors. So this is the signal for marketers to start look into the future.

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