target audience: TECH SUPPLIER  Publication date: Dec 2022 - Document type: Market Perspective - Doc  Document number: # AP49852222

Part 1: Developing Realistic Expectations for AR/VR/XR –Algorithms


  • Bill Rojas
  • Hugh Ujhazy Loading


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This IDC Market Perspective investigates the status of augmented reality (AR)/virtual reality (VR) development to gauge the prospects for realizing mass market devices, such as the AR glasses, in the next three to five years. Algorithms play a foundational role in mobile and tethered AR/VR/mixed reality (XR) devices. Tethered devices can support most of the computational needs via a PC or laptop or edge/cloud connection, but mobile AR/VR/XR devices have to be designed with battery power and thermal performance in mind, which means engineering trade-offs have to be made. System on a chip (SoC) companies that are selling into the AR/VR/XR OEM space as well as the future metaverse will need to offer functionality embedded in the SoC suites so that both entry-level and premium devices deliver a good user experience. IDC does not see the lack of standards as a principal inhibitor of technology innovation in the AR/VR/XR space and in fact the 3GPP is developing video and audio standards in 5G to support AR/VR. Rather, the challenge will be packaging in an adequate set of algorithms that will enable OEMs and software developers to meet limited battery and strict thermal targets.

"Although it is difficult to put an exact year as to when mass market AR glasses will emerge, the pieces are all coming together in the next three to five years that will be necessary to realize mass market devices. Device pricing has been often identified as an inhibiting factor, but with premium US$1,000 smartphones already on the market, IDC believes that premium AR/VR devices will have some flexibility in the initial stages, but the user experience will have to be excellent," says Bill Rojas, adjunct research director, IDC Asia/Pacific.


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