Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality… What happens to the Human?

20 April 2017

By Gabriel Celemin *

The market for Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality technologies will grow from $5 billions in 2015 to more than $162 billions in 2020 according to IDC. One of the biggest winners will be the retail industry. Why should we care about this?

At the Point of Sale, we could test drive a car in a race track, which is great, and it’s already being done. This is a fact of today. With Virtual Reality we can dive into a new world. For User Experience Design (UX) it changes the way in which we represent things and design interfaces completely, we need to disintermediate the interactions. Think about the abstractions that were built over decades: desktops, folders, files, mouse, pointer. All of this started to fade with the arrival of touch interfaces.

For User Experience Design (UX), VR/AR change the way in which we represent things and design interfaces completely, we need to disintermediate the interactions

Visual user interfaces are slowly conceding space because devices can now respond to gestures. We are experiencing the end of the reign of the screen as the Queen of interfaces: computers, television. It is a big paradigmatic change. We will continue to have screens at home, but they will be big screens integrated to walls and each device will have one.

To those of us who work in UX, this transformation forces us to stop thinking about solutions restricted to one screen and ask questions like: how will we interact with the new environment? what will happen to our social health? what things do we need to keep doing analogically and which not? and if Virtual Reality becomes routine, what happens to the human?

How will we interact with the new environment? what will happen to our social health? what things do we need to keep doing analogically and which not?

With these questions in mind, and a fascination for the possibilities that technology brings, we are just steps away from the expansion of our experiences.

* Article originally published at Comunidad Minders

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