AR and VR trends to be excited about in 2024

Senior team members share their thoughts on the AR and VR trends for 2024.

Desi Aleksandrova, Marketing Communications Manager

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2023 has been a busy and exciting year for FlexEnable with our team collaborating on several groundbreaking AR/VR projects with some of the world’s biggest brands in consumer electronics. The ever-evolving landscape of AR/VR holds immense potential to reshape various industries and facets of our lives – immersive training and learning, enhanced collaboration and communication, enriched shopping experiences, and improved healthcare are just a few examples of the technology’s tangible impact.

With an array of exciting commercial programs in the pipeline, we sought insights from our senior team members regarding their perspectives on AR/VR trends and their potential impact.

Mike Banach, Technical Director:

“I have been convinced for several years now that liquid crystal optics is a key enabler for the AR/VR headset market and that the elegance of making parts out of ultrathin, lightweight plastic will have a transformative impact on the all-important product form factor. The more recent trend, that is very exciting for FlexEnable, is that as these components get closer to market, we are finding more ways to integrate OTFT devices and circuits in the fundamental liquid crystal cells to reduce product complexity, remove cost, and increase functionality. I am very much looking forward to that trend continuing.”

Paul Cain, Strategy Director:

“It is now widely recognised that spatial dimming is a necessary function for see-through AR headsets, not only to boost the contrast of virtual objects in bright settings, but also to show dark objects in all environments. Spatial dimmers require fast-switching dimmer materials that can be divided into pixels, and each pixel is controlled by a transistor. FlexEnable’s technology is unique in being able to build such spatial dimmers on ultra-thin plastic, which is strongly preferred over glass as AR headsets seek to become lighter, smaller to ultimately resemble a regular pair of glasses.”

Elena Xie, Regional Sales Manager – Asia:

“According to iResearch’s projections, AR technology will experience a breakthrough in 2027, potentially reaching a shipment volume of one billion units by 2030. Waveguide technology is poised to play a pivotal role in AR development, as it offers greater compatibility with a wide range of display technologies. This suggests that dimming and tunable lenses will be the key enablers of widespread AR adoption.”

Erin McDowell, Chief Revenue Officer:

“AR and VR devices are incorporating many new components to meet challenges in near eye optics, displays, spatial tracking, and to compress hardware into a glasses form factor. On the content side, AI is becoming essential for rendering, understanding the world around the user through visual recognition, and creating content that is relevant to the user for the task they are doing. AI will evolve AR and VR into more than game-playing and looking at your screens through a device – for example, a headset could learn your patterns, anticipate what you might want to know, and provide relevant guidance and information. With device makers dedicating increasing resources to integrating AI into AR/VR technologies, this market is poised for growth. It’s an exciting prospect to be a part of an ecosystem that’s revolutionising the way we interact with the world around us.”

With a great lineup of talks and exhibitions scheduled for 2024, our team is eager to unveil the groundbreaking products we have been developing for AR and VR devices. We anticipate connecting with our valued customers and partners at CES 2024 and showcasing our innovative liquid crystal tunable lenses and dimmers at the SPIE AR VR MR exhibition.

For more information about flexible liquid crystal optics or to arrange a meeting, please contact us at info@flexenable.com.