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Big Growth in Education for AR, VR Expected by 2023

Challenges moving forward include the price of headsets.

OYSTER BAY, N.Y.—“AR and VR educational applications shift the learning process from passive to active, allowing students to interact with content and practice their knowledge in real-time conditions,” said ABI Research Analyst Elefheria Kouri in a press release on ABI’s recent application analysis report “Augmented and Virtual Reality in Education.”

The report highlights the advantages that AR and VR technology serve as educational tools, and how its use as such will boost the technology’s value, forecasting that by 2023 the value of AR in education will be $5.3 billion and the total revenues from VR Head Mounted Displays used in education will grow beyond $640 million.

However, there are still challenges for educational institutions implementing this technology, not least of which is funding AR/VR programs due to the cost of headsets, combined with limited financial resources in many schools. By 2023, ABI does predict that the costs for AR glasses and VR headsets will decrease, though at different levels. AR monocular glasses could cost an average selling price of $733 in 2023, while binocular models could cost $347. VR headsets are expected to fall to about $200 average selling price. Mobile device-based systems are more cost-effective options, per ABI, though they do not offer a fully immersive experience.

“In an ongoing quest to maintain student’s attention, new visualization and interaction tools are a natural fit,” said Eric Abbruzzese, principal analyst at ABI. “Greater visualization capabilities fit in upper learning and research efforts as well, so AR/VR can address the entire education ecosystem from Kindergarten through to post-graduate research. Add to this the flexibility of digital updateable and customizable content in a curriculum, and AR and VR are set up to play a catalytic role in education system going forward, provided the lowering prices and increasing content creation continue.”

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