Technology

Use of virtual reality set to increase by 140%

7 August 2016 | By Tom Ravenscroft

The use of virtual reality by CAD users and managers is increasing and its role is predicted to grow dramatically over the next five years, according to a Worldwide CAD Trends Survey 2016 by IT research specialist Business Advantage Group.

Awareness of augmented/virtual reality has increased to 22% in 2016 compared to 18% in last year’s survey. Usage of VR and AR has also increased to 5% form 3% in 2015.

According to the survey the use of VR/AR will increase by 60% over the next year and 140% over the next 3-5 years. As the current usage is relatively low this equates to 8% of CAD users and managers using VR or AR in 2017 and 12% by 2021.

Chris Turner, chief executive of Business Advantage Group, said: “Augmented Reality is a very exciting and fast developing trend with practical use cases in many industries.

“For example in AEC, during the design phase for collaboratively developing design intent between all stakeholders, during pre-construction for training and communicating design intent with the on-site team, during construction for monitoring progress and quality, then in facility management during the life of the structure for monitoring maintenance history.

“A key point for CAD software developers, who are under pressure to figure out what they’re doing with AR, is the user interface (UI) which, of course, needs to be very different from the UI we all so familiarly use on a flat computer screen,” he continued.

Turner also pointed out that AEC industry can learn from Pokemon Go: “Compare the simplicity of the new Pokémon Go game to AR visions in CAD that have sometimes been too complicated and haven’t taken off. Based on other recent research we’ve done, we predict many more AR software apps in the market in the coming years.”

Interestingly, according to the survey the usage of BIM by CAD users has actually dropped from 21% to 19%. Among the CAD users the benefits of using BIM are seen as design improvement (62%), savings on design time (47%) and cost savings (40%), as well as faster response times to market (35%).

A full copy of the report can be found here.

Compare the simplicity of the new Pokémon Go game to AR visions in CAD that have sometimes been too complicated and haven’t taken off. Based on other recent research we’ve done, we predict many more AR software apps in the market in the coming years.– Chris Turner, Business Advantage Group