Thanks to Apple Vision Pro, spatial computing has arrived.
Like it or not, from here on in, our physical world will now be augmented with digital content. We’re witnessing the birth of a new type of computing using the tools already on our desks and in our pockets, soon to be wrapped around our heads, eventually becoming part of standard contact lens and sunglasses.
Vision Pro and its offspring will become more affordable, smaller, and ubiquitous so we can expect that people will want to control, manage, and even install smarthome devices (and virtual devices that don’t exist in the physical world) just by looking at them inside their real homes. We’ll take vacations without leaving and control our homes and businesses from anywhere as if we never left.
We’ll learn how to use our physical and new virtual products via interactive 3D experiences that while impossible to imagine now, will eventually become our norm. Add burgeoning generative AI powers to the mix, and we will soon experience things we think are real (while generating and storing these memories digitally off-brain) wherever we are…or aren’t. Here are few things I think the future has in store for us.
- The Rise of Intelligent Environments: Generative AI, powered by vast amounts of data and sophisticated algorithms, will enable spatial computing to create intelligent environments around us. Our homes, workplaces, and public spaces will be infused with smart sensors, embedded displays, and AI-powered assistants, all seamlessly integrated into our everyday lives. These intelligent environments will anticipate our needs, automate tasks, and provide personalized experiences, ultimately enhancing our efficiency, comfort, and well-being.
- Personalized Augmented Reality: Spatial computing, when combined with generative AI, will pave the way for personalized augmented reality experiences. Augmented reality glasses, contact lenses, or even direct neural interfaces will become commonplace, providing us with real-time information and immersive digital overlays on the physical world. From personalized navigation and interactive information displays to virtual companions and customized entertainment, augmented reality will transform how we perceive and interact with our surroundings.
- Revolutionized Industries: Generative AI merged with spatial computing will have a profound impact on various industries. For example, in healthcare, surgeons will benefit from AI-generated real-time visualizations and guidance during complex procedures, leading to improved accuracy and patient outcomes. Architects and urban planners will utilize generative AI to design and simulate entire cities in virtual environments, allowing for better urban development decisions. Retail experiences will be elevated with personalized virtual showrooms, enabling customers to visualize products and try them virtually before making a purchase.
- Enhanced Communication and Collaboration: With the integration of generative AI and spatial computing, communication and collaboration will transcend physical boundaries. Virtual meetings will evolve into immersive holographic experiences, where participants from different locations can interact as if they were in the same room. Language barriers will be diminished through real-time translation and AI-generated natural language processing, fostering global connections and breaking down cultural barriers.
- Empowered Creativity and Imagination: Generative AI combined with spatial computing will empower individuals to unleash their creativity and imagination in unprecedented ways. Artists, designers, and storytellers will have access to powerful AI tools that can generate and manipulate virtual environments, characters, and narratives, enabling them to create immersive experiences that blur the lines between the real and the virtual. The possibilities for new forms of interactive art, virtual performances, and collaborative storytelling will be limitless. Imagine entire 3D movies generated on-the-fly for your family with a simple prompt like “Make a 35 minute movie with us portraying superheroes saving our hometown from aliens in the style of Marvel.”
Conclusion: As we look ahead to a future where generative AI merges with spatial computing, it becomes evident that our reality is on the brink of a remarkable transformation. Intelligent environments, personalized augmented reality, and industry-wide revolutions are just a glimpse of the possibilities that await us. The fusion of generative AI and spatial computing will not only enhance our daily lives but also redefine the way we perceive and interact with the world around us. By embracing these technological advancements responsibly, we can harness their potential to shape a future that is both exciting and beneficial for humanity.