The future of the event industry will be mobile with interactive AR and VR dominating the spectrum. The rate of technology change is accelerating with thousands of ideas, apps and innovations bubbling up to help event planners do their jobs better and improve the attendee experience. Event planners and marketers will be working closely and provide a much more detailed profile of the attendee (customer) interests, while raising the importance of events within organizations in 2018 with the advent of these new technologies.
Here we have listed the top 5 event technology trends that will shape the event planning and execution for the coming year.
01. Interactive Augmented Reality
This is quite an immersive experience. With this, the offline and online world comes together and forms a perfect harmony, the technology blends perfectly with creativity here. The creatives trigger the interactive content on the user's handheld devices. E.g. You can scan a car with this app and the features and color options etc. come alive on your phone/tab itself. Furthermore, the widespread popularity of applications like Pokemon Go and Ink Hunter have proven the public's interest in augmented-reality and opened the floodgates for VR to seep into more and more aspects of daily life. It is a standout trend where technology would be converging with physical fabrications to create a deeper brand experience for consumers. Brands will need to learn quickly how to meaningfully integrate AR into their communications, engagement and customer-service offerings and ensure that their use of emerging technologies enriches customers' lives or answers a need.
02. Interactive VR technology
This technology is catching up fast with the experiential agencies since it provides an extremely personalized experience of the product or service to the user. The VR headsets creates a virtual environment which is very close to reality. Product demonstration will offer an incredible experience to event attendees. Especially helpful in displaying large, bulky products which otherwise would be difficult (or impossible!) at trade shows/events, VR will give a new dimension to the future of the meetings industry. Marketers now can engage attendees with VR gamifications and host interactive 360 degree virtual meetings. It will help people attend shows as a robotic, VR attendee, a great opportunity to bring the complete attendee experience to those who are unable to travel. Industry verticals like real estate and product companies (like car companies) among others are quite excited to use this technology.
03. Projection Mapping will scale up to the next level
This has already caught on like wild fire with the industry and now will go several notches up in coming times. The 3D content mapped on 3D surfaces with multiple projection sources will be the key. From printing 3D models of buildings and using desktop projectors to provide clients with miniature real-life previews of brand's 3D projection mapping projects, to creating interactive 3D projection mapping displays that change based on the audience's actions, to projecting onto human faces - the possibilities for the future of this technology for event industry seems endless.
04. Mobile / App based experience
This is becoming a very important extension of the overall on-ground experience. The triggers are offline and the content goes online. For e.g. The event app Eventjoy gives attendees and hosts the ability to prioritize events while on the move and accurately judge the time commitments of their schedule. They can send feedback to hosts, navigate unfamiliar workspaces and interact with a team's holistic schedule of events through the app. When planners oversee a series of events, mobile coordination with their clientele works to increase engagement. These are extremely useful fee-free ticketing solution for planners.
05. Proximity (sensors) based personalized experience
This has immense potential as this forms the basis for "Near By" experiences. This integrates with projection & action etc. to create an amazing and interactive experience. This new proximity-detection technology allows event managers to interact personally with visitors and attendees by streaming location specific content and alerts to their mobile devices. WIFI-Beacons have caught the attention of event tech experts globally, as they helped usher in a new era in which attendees expect event organizers to offer a more contextualized event experience. iBeacon is Apple's version of the beacons, which allows Bluetooth devices to broadcast or receive small and static pieces of data within short distances of 300 feet. Events such as Mobile world congress, Detroit Auto show, film, food & wine festivals, concerts, music & art festival are already leveraging its advantage.
94% of the event industry have announced that they plan to maintain or increase their mobile app budget for upcoming years, since proximity-aware event apps are seemingly 235% more engaging than standard mobile apps at events, according to a recent Cvent study. In the past two years, virtual reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) has gone from an intriguing concept to a full-fledged marketing strategy. 2018 events will showcase these revolutionary tech experiences for its attendees in a new vision. However, as we move more towards data specific content, security measures have to be made more stringent and powerful.