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Augmented and virtual reality technologies are here.

While still arguably in their infancy, it won’t be long until the technologies reach a level of maturity where companies can’t ignore the value they can add to business processes and engagement.

One industry that has truly begun to value this new wave of technology is manufacturing.

In fact, over one-third of US manufacturers expect to adopt augmented and virtual reality technologies by 2018 according to PwC.

Siemens, for example, recognized the enormous opportunity augmented and virtual reality presents for manufacturers. That’s why they expanded their Frontier Partner Program to identify startups that focus on the technology as potential new partners, which they announced at a recent event in San Francisco appropriately named Transforming Manufacturing: Tech Trends in Augmented/Virtual Reality.

The Frontier Partner Program offers selected startups in 3D printing, robotics, and now augmented and virtual reality free access to industry-proven software tools and components, developer resources, and marketing support.

In addition to the resources and support on offer, the program helps entrepreneurs develop their solutions and take them to market faster. Why is this important? The faster products and services can get to market, the quicker Siemens’ customers, and the whole manufacturing industry, can benefit.

This effort is an example of Siemens’ evolving approach to innovation, and its commitment to support and work more closely with startups in the future, as was recently announced with its global next47 initiative.

With this program in place, Siemens is putting itself in a position to drive innovation and pioneer transformation within the entire manufacturing industry.

Conclusion

Personal computers. Social networks. Electric vehicles. Uber. At one point in time, they were all seen as fads. But now, they’re part of our culture.

While augmented and virtual reality might be years away from mainstream adoption in the manufacturing industry, there are real world use cases that can’t be ignored. And companies like Siemens are capitalizing on just how transformative this technology can be for the industry.

If you’re interested in learning more about augmented and virtual reality opportunities with the Siemens Frontier Partner Program, be sure to get in touch with the Frontier team.