The travel industry has suffered more than most in the last couple of years. With endless flights grounded, tourism put on hold, and opportunities to connect with customers diminished, confidence in the landscape has dwindled.
To strengthen connections with an uncertain audience, travel and tourism companies are being forced to explore new technologies as a solution for innovation. With XR technology, innovative brands are opening the door to new sales and marketing experiences, better customer services, and even new avenues for travel.
While there are countless XR vendors out there capable of helping travel brands make the transition into the XR world, some are having more of an impact than most. Here are some of the leading companies taking travel organisations towards new frontiers in 2022.
Innovators in the age of the “Metaverse”, Meta is one of the most impressive companies supporting businesses in the travel sector today. With innovative 3D and augmented reality advertising opportunities, as well as powerful VR experiences through Oculus, Meta can guide brands through a multitude of XR environments.
Various brands have already begun experimenting with Meta’s AR solutions to help customers make better decisions about where they want to travel. The same tools can pave the way for better customer service, and more immersive purchasing decisions. VR environments in Meta can also unlock new opportunities for travel experiences in the form of virtual travel and tours. The affordability of Oculus headsets even makes this technology more accessible to a wider range of smaller companies.
Alongside Meta, Microsoft is quickly gaining steam as a pioneer in the metaverse, creating new landscapes for us to explore in the digital world. Microsoft’s “Mesh” platform makes it easier for developers to create custom experiences in an XR environment. What’s more, the HoloLens technology provided by Microsoft is widely regarded to be the leading solution in the industry for mixed reality experiences.
With Microsoft, companies in the travel landscape can create more immersive hybrid experiences for their audiences. MR solutions can allow users to take holographic tour operators with them on every adventure, to discover more about the destinations they visit. The same solutions could also pave the way for more impressive virtual travel experiences.
Google is a well-known market leader in the technology space, responsible for helping us to navigate the world more effectively. In the age of XR in travel, Google’s easy-to-use development tools can allow a wider range of travel, tour, and transportation companies to create a wide selection of compelling apps for better customer experience.
Google’s easy-to-use developer kits for AR applications, as well as access to Google Maps and GPS technology, can allow travel companies to give their users more direction wherever they go. The same tools can even offer real-time translation, so people can enjoy their surroundings more with instant insights into what signs and words really mean.
Like Google, Apple is also paving the way for the more rapid adoption of XR technology in the travel landscape. The company has its own dedicated AR development kit, so users can build immersive experiences designed for iOS users. At the same time, Apple is rapidly investing in a wider range of disruptive tools to support companies in building XR opportunities.
The company has announced various plans for things like AR smart glasses which feel just as comfortable to wear as regular sunglasses. These tools could allow travel companies to provide their users with everything from real-time navigation support to extra information as they travel to new destinations. The solutions could also allow for immersive hybrid experiences in travel destinations.
Varjo is easily one of the better-known companies in the XR environment today, thanks to its wide selection of high-quality, lightweight, and powerful headsets. Intelligent headsets like the Varjo Aero could be particularly valuable in the travel industry, as they come with a more compact form and lightweight design, great for use in a range of scenarios.
Varjo can support travel companies in creating try-before-you-buy experiences for tourists, so they can see what an environment will look and feel like in advance. The flexible headsets also work with a wide range of additional software options, so companies can build the most immersive applications possible from scratch. With various Varjo headsets to suit different needs, travel companies will be able to experiment with all kinds of XR in travel.
Creating powerful experiences for virtual travel, customer service, and beyond requires access to the right technology. Headsets and immersive software also require processors capable of managing a significant amount of data and bandwidth. Qualcomm, one of the market leaders in processing technology, is helping countless brands to create new travel experiences.
Recently, the company worked alongside Skylights to produce a VR headset called the AlloSky, which allows users to enjoy amazing VR experiences in a compact space. The lightweight headset is ideal for in-flight entertainment, as it doesn’t require the same amount of wires and bulky components as a majority of alternative devices.
Another phenomenal hardware company making waves in virtually every industry, VIVE has the potential to deliver all kinds of immersive experiences to end users. VIVE headsets are designed to deliver the best possible level of immersion for both consumer and corporate purposes. The solutions are an excellent choice for travel companies hoping to provide their customers with an insight into what destinations and excursions have to offer.
With VIVE technology, companies around the world are producing more productive environments for customers service, sales, and marketing. As consumers become more discerning about their travel choices, VIVE will help companies to guide customers through a wider range of choices.