By Wendy Eichenbaum
In July 2016, Pokémon Go exploded on the scene. Within 2 months, over 80 million people had downloaded the game. Businesses attracted customers using in-game features. And though augmented reality (AR) was invented in 1968, millions of people tried AR for the first time. AR is a technology that layers computer-generated elements on top of real world experiences. In the case of Pokémon, Pokémon characters moved around a real map or a camera screen.
A year later, what are the effects of the Pokémon craze? On the surface, it might not be easy to detect. Daily users have by dropped 80%. There is no string of “copy-cat” Pokémon games. And a majority of people do not know the difference between augmented reality and its counterpart virtual reality (VR). VR is a computer-generated simulation of real life that completely immerses users.
However, just below the surface, there has been a profound change. We no longer marvel at the benefits of AR; instead, we expect it.