For facility managers responsible for keeping buildings clean and safe, augmented reality (AR) is becoming a useful tool.
An increasing number of managers are turning AR to help them with their cleaning and maintenance to keep visitors and occupants safe.
The technology first became most popular in the gaming and entertainment field but a recent survey shows it has a considerable role to play in facility management during the COVID-19 pandemic.
A new report from AI and computer software developer Resonai has found that 20 per cent of facility managers are currently using AR. While one in five managers are already utilizing this technology, nearly three-quarters (73 per cent) expect to implement it over the next two years.
Augmented reality’s current usage is most prevalent in healthcare facilities, of which 30 per cent have already implemented it. That was the highest percentage found in a single field, ahead of manufacturing facilities (26 per cent), educational facilities (25 per cent), and corporate offices (23 per cent).
AR technology is used mostly for marketing applications such as tours and demos, at a rate of 20 per cent, followed by industrial manufacturing applications (18 per cent), smart maintenance and repairs (12 per cent), tenant and visitor services (10 per cent), and training/tutorials (10 per cent).
Meanwhile, facility managers cited the automation of maintenance processes (49 per cent) as the greatest benefit offered by augmented reality. Other key motives were prevention of maintenance issues (45 per cent), training and tutorials (38 per cent), property sales and leasing (32 per cent), reduction of physical contact during the COVID-19 pandemic (27 per cent), and creation of new revenue opportunities (27 per cent).
The report is based on a digital survey that quizzed senior facility management directors and executives from the United States and Europe in various industries including corporate offices, manufacturing, retail, residential, health care, education, entertainment, and grocery. The survey, conducted from November 2020 to January 2021, aimed to better understand the current trend in the usage of AR.
According to the report, AR technology is expected to see “explosive growth” in the coming years. Goldman Sachs Research projects the industry to represent an over-C$100 billion market by 2025.