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Which XR Firms Are Leading the Charge for Interoperability? 


The market for extended reality is booming. Predicted to grow to a value of around $98.74 billion by 2030, XR is attracting the attention of not just countless consumers but endless business leaders too.  

Over the last couple of years, companies have discovered the benefits of XR for everything from boosting creativity and productivity to enhancing collaboration. Automotive companies use VR environments to build new vehicles while embedding AR technology into their navigation systems. Retail brands are experimenting with XR to bring new purchasing experiences to consumers. Some major organisations are even experimenting with the idea of Mixed Reality holograms. 

However, like many digital innovations, XR often struggles to work at its best when placed in a vacuum. As companies continue to embrace the age of digital transformation, they’re looking for tools which can align seamlessly with the solutions they already rely on every day.  

As a result, the demand for “interoperability” in XR is increasing.  

Which Companies are Already Investing In Interoperability? 

The concept of interoperability is important to XR innovation isn’t new. Back in 2018, as part of the IBC Masterclass on VR technology, Rob Koenen shared his vision of the future of virtual reality. He suggested that VR must be more interoperable and accessible to become a mainstream solution for modern brands.  

It makes sense, as most companies start exploring the benefits of XR for things like collaboration, ideation, and communication; they don’t necessarily want to give up on their existing investments in these areas. Most XR pioneers and early adopters want to continue leveraging the benefits of the tools they already use in more immersive environments.  

Fortunately, leading XR brands are paying attention. Although there’s a way to go before every XR solution is as “interoperable” as possible, we’re seeing evidence of major vendors making their systems more flexible and partner-friendly. For instance: 


Meta’s Oculus devices not only work alongside a wide range of different hardware solutions, but they’re also designed to support countless different types of software too seamlessly.  

The Oculus store features a dedicated section for “Oculus for Work”, where companies can access a partnership with Microsoft to bring not only Microsoft Teams but various Office apps into their VR environments. As Meta continues to build out its version of the ”metaverse”, we will likely see new partnerships emerge.  


As Microsoft increases its focus on the XR space, it’s not just working with Meta but a range of different vendors too.  

The Microsoft HoloLens solution already has many mixed reality partners, designing independent software, systems integration solutions and hardware to accompany the MR environment. Microsoft also has its own developer environment where people can build their experiences for Mixed Reality. 


Varjo, one of the market leaders in the XR environment, has a dedicated partner program for software professionals who want to build unique experiences for Varjo headsets.  

The company also integrates with TechViz, UNIGINE, and various other innovators to help companies combine more of their immersive experiences together. There’s even a Varjo SDK available for developers too.  


The Unity landscape is one of the key development platforms for XR innovators, and it’s designed to work with a host of leading tools and services already in the digital marketplace.  

Unity Integrations allow users to connect Unity services to popular tools like Discord, Slack, and Jira. Plus, companies can build their own cloud connections within the Unity ecosystem, bringing various different tools and services under one umbrella.  

Pico Interactive:  

Pico Interactive’s developer platform offers companies and developers access to various integration and support services.  

There’s full SDK access, support for integrating payment systems, and data statistics. Plus, Pico Interactive has a dedicated technical support team available to assist people in building unified experiences within the Pico Interactive landscape.  


Google’s AR environment is designed to work on various qualified Android devices and solutions, so companies can build augmented reality into virtually any tool they choose. The solution also integrates with Unity, Unreal, and even the iOS environment in some cases. 

For developers hoping to build their own augmented reality experiences with Google, it’s relatively simple and straightforward to connect multiple apps and environments in one space. There are even various SDKs for the most popular development environments. 

Magic Leap 

Like Microsoft, Magic Leap is making significant progress in the MR and AR worlds with its innovative, business-focused technology. Over the years, the organisation has begun to invest more heavily in partnerships with other brands to improve interoperability. The Android-based operating system in the Magic Leap headset works well with a range of software environments. 

Additionally, Magic Leap has deep collaborative partnerships with developer platforms like Unity and technology innovators like NVIDIA.  

The Growth of Interoperability in XR 

Ultimately, if XR solutions become the next “video conferencing app” or “team collaboration tool”, they can’t be disconnected from the rest of a company’s technology stack. Most XR developers currently building in this space have already recognised this and are introducing interoperability solutions for various hardware and software solutions.  

Going forward, the demand for interoperability is likely to be even greater with the rise of the metaverse. In order to create XR environments within the metaverse landscape, companies will be highly reliant on access to a set of standards-based and interoperable tools. This is one of the core reasons why the Metaverse Standards Forum was created in 2022.  

The Forum, which includes many leading innovators like Meta, Google, Nvidia, Microsoft, and Khronos, could help to create some of the new guidelines and regulations required to make the future metaverse more aligned and synchronised. In the meantime, it will be up to individual XR innovators to ensure their solutions play well with others.  




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