The imperative efficiency and operational safety in energy and utilities are ensuring deeper implementation of technologies such as augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR) and mixed reality (MR) across all forms of operations in the aforementioned sectors. After all, a deeper insight into critical issues at a factory, manufacturing or power unit can boost productivity by lessening complications and safety issues.
At present, a select number of companies are working toward implementing AR and MR in energy and utility sectors. One could consider taking a look at these companies.
AR & MR Markets in Energy and Utility
According to a report by ABI Research, the total augmented reality market revenues for the energy and utilities industry are expected to grow to $18 billion by 2022, with platform and licensing and smart glasses hardware contributing the most.
The major reason behind AR and MR technologies to occupy such a vital space in the aforementioned sectors is the scope they offer to raise work efficiency and improve operational safety.
AR to Transform Energy and Utility: Here’s How
Coming to how augmented and mixed reality technologies are actually going to assist development in energy and utility sectors, one needs to look into two major areas. These are increasing efficiency through inspection and maintenance, and making hazardous workplaces much safer with the use of safety equipment check-up and by mapping potential threats.
AR and MR open new doors when it comes to spotting, analyzing and solving a problem or prevent dangerous scenarios in a factory or manufacturing unit. In addition, the way verbal and non-verbal communication takes place at such a workspace can be altered using AR and MR to make these more efficient.
Instead of creating chaos, one may just inform everyone in the hazardous zone by simply sending a notification. One can also request for remote assistance from a skilled personnel from any location.
AR and MR also help in making the right business decision by assisting with data available to the right person at the right time. Crucial decision such as restoring power, shutting off a hazardous zone, evacuation, maintenance and fault-spotting become extremely easy with these technologies pulling out the right data and making it available to the decision maker.
A vital manner in which AR and MR function is via necessary gear. Several manufacturers of such devices are thus making massive investments in the space, which include companies like Atheer, DAQRI, Alphabet Inc. (GOOGL - Free Report) , Microsoft Corporation (MSFT - Free Report) , ODG and Magic Leap. Some of the safety gears comprise helmets, sunglasses and other similar devices.
In addition, developments on different AR devices, which range from heads-up and holographic displays, smart glasses to handheld and smartphone-based tools are set to boost the operations and safety measures at energy and utility companies.
In fact, the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) is also working with utility giants such as Duke Energy Corporation (DUK - Free Report) , Consolidated Edison, Inc. (ED - Free Report) , Korea Electric Power Corporation, EDF Energy and others to make augmented reality fit better into daily operations and train workforce to handle technology.
3 Stocks to Watch
We have, therefore, chosen three stocks that are set to benefit from more AR and MR implementations in the energy and utility sectors. All these stocks carry a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.
Microsoft’s HoloLens, which is a mixed reality headset, allows utility sector workers to better handle operations located in their field of vision. Microsoft belongs to the Zacks Computer - Software industry. The company has an expected earnings growth rate of 9.5% for the next year. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for the company’s current-year earnings has moved 0.2% north in the past 60 days.
Duke Energy adopted augmented reality quite early and has been testing it for several years in partnership with EPRI. Duke Energy belongs to the Zacks Utility - Electric Power industry. The company has an expected earnings growth rate of 6% for the next year. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for the company’s current-year earnings has moved 0.6% north in the past 60 days.
QUALCOMM Incorporated’s (QCOM - Free Report) new XR Enterprise Program initiative drives the adoption of AR, VR and MR solutions across a wide range of industries, which comprise logistics and transportation, energy and utilities, manufacturing, construction and aerospace among others. QUALCOMM belongs to the Zacks Wireless Equipment industry. The company has an expected earnings growth rate of 60% for next year.
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