Enterprise AR customers should consider a number of factors when purchasing or developing technology for Augmented Reality projects.
In the early assessment phase of a new technology, research is commonly performed by groups of engineers who understand the enterprise business and have the mandate to experiment with, and study new technology components. They have a budget to purchase sample products and bring software and hardware into their laboratories. They produce internal prototypes and reports for different segments of the business, including line management, IT and product management.
AR research continues to be a highly important activity within large enterprises, and therefore a significant revenue source for providers of enterprise AR products and services. During the research and assessment phase of a new technology, AR providers are evaluated and neither their size nor their suitability for long-term engagement represent barriers to entry. In fact, smaller suppliers tend to be flexible, nimble, and eager to develop relationships with enterprises, and can offer more value for a limited exploratory project.
With the support of the members and resources of the AREA, the process of evaluating technologies for possible enterprise deployment can become straightforward for corporate research groups, requiring lower investment in terms of engineering and financial resources.
As research efforts yield greater results, and specific technologies are found to hold greater value for diverse groups in an enterprise, the responsibility for technology purchases tends to be shared by more stakeholders. Even before a project is initiated, other stakeholders need to be involved to assure the smooth introduction and full adoption of AR. Today, enterprise AR technology buyers can be found within groups as diverse as product design, engineering, manufacturing, marketing, testing and training. These professionals have many other responsibilities and may not have the full support of research or corporate IT groups when making inquiries about AR technology purchases. This can place a burden of education and support on suppliers and introduce delays for everyone.
Another variable that providers and customers will need to manage is fees. The financial resources available for introducing AR vary among companies. What is financially sound for one enterprise may not be justified for another. Today, suppliers are inconsistent with fees and licenses. Everyone is experimenting with new projects and cost structures, which bring risks that should be shared by providers and customers. The AR for Enterprise Alliance works with AR customers and providers to quantify the benefits and recommend approaches to distributing risk fairly when the outcomes are still unclear.
Finally, enterprise AR customers need to develop guidance for their suppliers on how they will measure the performance of AR. Agreed-upon metrics and a clear vocabulary will reduce misunderstandings and increase the likelihood of fruitful partnerships with providers.
The AREA provides resources to support enterprise AR customers through all phases of their evolution, from research and implementation to expansion of AR in production environments. Join the AREA today to benefit fully from the business networking opportunities and premium AREA products and services.