Virtual reality has been around for decades, but it is just now becoming a typical thing to see in a household. These days anyone with a smartphone and Google cardboard can use a rudimentary form of virtual reality, and some of the headsets that take cell phones are even quite advanced. It’s no wonder that developers are pouring money into VR technology – it is expected to be a $25 billion industry by 2021. What’s surprising, though, is that developers are pouring even more into augmented reality technology, and that sector is projected to reach $83 billion in the same time frame.

Many VR and AR experts believe that augmented reality has greater real-world applications than virtual reality. With VR, the screen becomes your world, while with AR the world becomes your screen. This leaves developers open to creating everything from real-time turn by turn directions projected onto the street in front of you to conference calls with a more human element of interaction. You could even watch a cooking show hands-free and cook along in real life without any obstruction of your vision!

Both virtual reality and augmented reality have their benefits. Virtual reality is already being used in the real estate market to show homes to prospective buyers when they can’t make it to a showing or to narrow down the field. It is also being used in classrooms, particularly in places where students don’t have access to basic things like a chemistry lab. But augmented reality is gaining ground – in 2016 investors poured $2.3 billion into augmented reality startups, and it’s just a matter of time before people are walking around with AR headsets that tell them the ratings for restaurants before they even go in.

Investors are pouring cash into augmented reality and virtual reality technology, and programming for both is coming along right behind it. How will you be using VR and AR technology in the future? It’s going to be happening sooner than you think, so it’s time to start getting your company on board. Learn more about the future of the virtual reality and augmented reality business from this infographic!

Infographic Courtesy of Lumus