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Canadian Businesses Push Tech Enhanced Realities

The Globe and Mail | | Feb 9, 2023

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During a recent visit to her hairdresser in Toronto, Iliana Oris Valiente had a chance meeting with a colleague located in Germany, at her company’s U.S. headquarters in San Francisco.

  • Say What?  Here’s the backstory: In the hairdresser’s chair, Ms. Valiente, managing director and innovation lead at Accenture Canada, slipped on a virtual-reality (VR) headset she had in her purse. “That’s the thing about our metaverse: You can run into anyone from anywhere.”
    • She then logged into Accenture’s metaverse and teleported her avatar to the digital replica of the company’s San Francisco offices.
    • While ‘there,’ she bumped into the German employee, who also happened to be touring that part of the metaverse.

See:  CB Insights: Metaverse stack and companies making it a reality

  • Tech enhanced reality:  At a time when many companies are still figuring out how to transition their pandemic-era, work-from-home teams into permanently remote or hybrid work force models, others are increasingly expanding the boundaries of their workplaces with technology-enhanced realities (see: Chamber Canadian businesses)
    • These digital pioneers are equipping their employees with smart glasses designed to transport users into a digital universe. Whether they’re in a VR, augmented reality (AR), mixed reality (MR) or extended reality (XR) platform, they could, respectively,
      • be fully immersed in a programmed world
      • have synthetic images and data layered onto a real-time environment, or
      • experience a merger of real and digital objects and people.
      • They could include visualizing industrial design in digitized 3D, or collaborating with remote team members as avatars gathered in a virtual space.
      • They might also be conducting predictive maintenance – where analyses of historical and current, real-time data trigger service alerts – using “digital twins” or digital replicas of places or objects such as factories, airplanes and ships.
    • Growing interest and opportunities:  French research firm ReportLinker sees the extended-reality market, which was valued at US$25.84-billion in 2020, soaring to a value of close to US$400-billion by 2026.  By that same year, one out of every four people are expected to spend at least an hour a day in the metaverse, according to research firm Gartner Inc., in Stamford, Conn

See: Aftermath Islands Metaverse Launches Events Pavilion with Over 1.1 Million Player-Generated Resource Pack NFTs

“We were having an issue with our panning machine,” recalls Mr. Pinsky, whose company makes high-end chocolates and confections. “So (the representative) took out these goggles from his briefcase and reached out to a technical adviser in Belgium, who walked him through the settings of the machine. Within an hour the machine was performing as it was supposed to.  “I was completely amazed.”

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