Augmented Reality (AR) technology has gained a lot of traction with marketing and sales teams.

The pairing of AR technology with both mobile and web technology adds interactive value-added material to support the marketing and sales of products.

Company-X built an AR mobile app for a prominent whiteware appliance manufacturer that demonstrated features and functions of whiteware products and could also double as an interactive user manual.

In the supermarket, for example, I could launch an AR app on my smartphone and point its camera at the label on a tin of beans. The app could read the nutritional information, play an advertisement and even a video promotion explaining that if you buy 10 cans of beans you could tap and order a free branded plate, or some other enticing offer.

You do not even need a barcode or a QR code for this functionality in an AR mobile app. A unique image at point of sale is all that is required, such as the label on the tin.

In online shopping, you could use AR to create a digital double of yourself and then try on various outfits as you would in a bricks and mortar store. You could check whether that dress goes with those shoes, and that handbag.

Augmented Reality software can be built for almost any computing device, from apps for smartphone and tablet computers to web-based solutions for personal computers running a variety of web browsers in Apple MacOS, Microsoft Windows, or Linux.

In terms of dedicated AR hardware, Microsoft’s HoloLens dominates the enterprise augmented reality space.

Around five years ago, when AR technology was embryonic, there was a huge amount of choice in hardware devices on the market. Some of them great, some of them not so much. There were a huge number of manufacturers of Augmented Reality devices, but their numbers have diminished. Gradually, they were weeded out and refined as the industry saw what was, and what was not, working for varying clients.

HoloLens has the most traction primarily because of Microsoft’s huge business user base. There are still other AR glasses from other manufacturers available, but they do not have much traction in the enterprise space.

Regardless, the most accessible option is an AR app for smartphones if you want to use the technology for marketing and sales with the broadest audience. Nearly everyone refuses to leave home without a smartphone. AR’s popularity on mobile devices is why it continues to gain traction.

  • Lance Bauerfeind is a senior consultant at Hamilton software specialist Company-X.