Pokémon GO and Snapchat dominate as fifth of Americans use AR

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More than a fifth of American consumers have used augmented reality (AR), according to a new study, and half of that number do so weekly through mobile games such as Pokémon GO.

The study from research firm ARtillery Intelligence and Thrive Analytics, creator of the Virtual Reality Monitor, found that gaming is 22% of American consumers’ top AR app category, followed by social.

Images credits: Niantic and Snapchat

Pokémon GO and Snapchat’s AR Lenses are driving this use, but ARtillery Intelligence predicts that others, such as everyday utilities like visual search that lets users search what they see, will emerge.

The research included a survey sample of 3,162 US adults.

Mike Boland, chief analyst at ARtillery Intelligence, said: “Gaming and social are typically where new consumer technologies germinate. But history tells us that sustained value and frequent use will develop from more mundane utilities that solve everyday problems. We’re seeing first signs of that in tools like visual search and Google Lens.”

“AR and VR are in initial adoption stages,” said Thrive Analytics managing partner Jason Peaslee. “This means user behaviour and affinities are still developing, just as we saw in early stages of past tech adoption cycles. AR and VR have the ability to transform the way people work, connect, and learn, so we’ll continue to track the consumer adoption that informs product and business strategies.”