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VR & AR in the Healthcare Domain: A Timeline

Augmented Reality Virtual Reality Healthcare

 A simulated environment made possible by computer technology is known as virtual reality. Virtual reality can be experienced by wearing a wide field of vision headset. To build immersive experiences, designers, visual and sound artists, engineers, and programmers combine their expertise and abilities, making people assume they have been to a different planet. 


In addition to virtual reality, augmented reality has made significant strides for quite some time. Typically, it extends the real environment with 3D or 2D virtual objects, buttons, and sounds. When working with visual objects, tables, floors, and other real plane surfaces are often needed.  


Augmented and virtual reality in healthcare 

 

Wearable devices are becoming increasingly popular in emerging economies as AR and VR technologies advance due to lowering hardware and device delivery costs, more educational content, and a rise in health-related applications. As the healthcare infrastructures and availability of technology improve, markets like the Asia Pacific (excluding Japan and China), Central and Eastern Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, and Africa are starting to leverage more and more wearables. 


This article will highlight some of the significant milestones of AR/VR in the healthcare sector. Read on.  

 

History of AR-VR in healthcare  

 

1838: 'Stereoscope' was invented by Charles Wheatstone. The stereoscope enabled viewers to see 3D pictures.  


1929: Ed Links created a flight simulator named 'Link Trainer,' which allows pilots to train and have an accurate representation of controlling a real plane.  


1939: 'View-Master' was created by William Gruber. Its simple stereoscopic viewer allowed one to look at two identical pictures cross-eyed to see a unified 3D image.  


1956: This is one of the years that paved the way for AR-VR technology in the modern age. Sensorama, considered one of the earliest immersive VR systems, was invented by Morton Heilig.  


1968: The first VR head-mounted display, The Sword of Damocles, was invented by Ivan Sutherland.  



1977: MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) developed the Aspen Movie Map, enabling viewers to take a virtual tour of Aspen in Colorado.  


1987: The name Virtual Reality is officially formed, thanks to Jaron Lanier. His company first started selling VR products in the market.  


1991: Virtuality, the first VR arcade machine, was launched. The machine boasted a short response time and provided gamers with stereoscopic vision devices and game controllers.  


1994: Sega's VR-1 motion simulator was first made available in its SegaWorld arcades.  


1999: NASA uses AR to navigate its N-38 spacecraft, which was equipped with an AR-powered dashboard for navigation. 


2007: Google created Street View, which offers 360-degree views of locations. 

In the same year, Sony released PlayStation Eye to enhance the gamers' experience.  


2010: Oculus Rift headset's first prototype is designed.  


2014: Oculus was acquired by Facebook for a whopping $2bn.  


The PS4 VR headset Project Morpheus was launched by Sony the same year. 


2015: Some major milestones in the AR-VR technology were accomplished this year. To start with, a patent for a head-mounted display apparatus was granted to Apple.  


Google introduced Cardboard, which uses a head mount to turn a smartphone into a VR device.  


Samsung introduced its Gear VR headset in the market. 

 

Mobile World Congress saw the unveiling of HTC Vibe, a headset developed by HTC and Valve. 


AR-VR investment reached $700 million as virtual and augmented reality medical applications are expanded.  


2016: The first-generation Oculus Rift device was released.  


Sony launched PlayStation VR (PSVR) in the market. 


2017: Microsoft launched Xbox one X with a VR-ready games console and headset.  


2018: Lenovo released its Mirage Solo headset, the first headset to run Google Daydream. 


2019: More than 4 million PSVR headsets were sold, according to a statement released by Sony. 


2021: The Asia-Pacific (including Japan and China) market for AR and VR headsets expanded by 60.8% year over year in 2021 as shipments reached 2.19 million units, a recent report from Internation Data Corporation confirmed.  

 

What's more to come?  

 

2023: A growing number of VR games will be cloud-based and supported by 5G networks.  


2030: GlobalData predicts that the markets for VR and AR will each be worth $28 billion and $76 billion, respectively.  


According to Market Research Future, the size of the global AR medical market is anticipated to grow to USD 11,654.68 million by 2030 at a CAGR of 28.30 percent over the forecast period of 2020–2030.  

 

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