Spectacular benefits of Augmented Reality Remote Operations

Keyur Bhalavat
Keyur Bhalavat Author By

In-person customer service is going through a transformation. With the help of augmented reality, technicians are able to offer remote support to customers by using their smartphones or tablets. This is especially helpful for those customers who require immediate help or are in remote locations where technician visit is difficult. 

The use cases are endless – from remote installation to remote troubleshooting; AR is proving to be an extremely valuable tool for enterprises. Let’s dig deeper into what AR remote assistance is. How does it work? What are its applications? How does it benefit industries?
 

What is Remote Assistance AR?  

Remote assistance AR is one of the latest technologies that are currently being used by companies to provide remote assistance to their customers. Industrial enterprises are finding this technology more cost-effective and efficient than other methods, as it seamlessly integrates across devices, linking the contact center and headquarters. 

It has also been found to be an effective solution for enterprises that need help with fixing problems in remote locations. The use of remote assistance AR has proven very effective in providing customer service and support remotely without the need for a costly travel. 

Remote assistance AR can be used for many things, such as: 

  • Providing remote support to employees on the field or at remote sites 
  • Sharing information and content with customers in real-time 
  • Facilitating training sessions, webinars, and presentations 

How Does Augmented Reality Remote Assistance Work?  

The remote assistance AR process starts with an initial request, typically from a field worker, and then continues with an expert providing guidance and solutions remotely. 

The expert will use their mobile device’s camera and screen as well as the field technician’s camera and screen to diagnose and troubleshoot the problem. Lately, the use of AR wearables is gaining prominence across industries. 

The expert is able to use their mobile device to access the view of field worker’s mobile device. They can annotate and give instructions over live video, which would be visible to the field worker. For a more intensive guidance, the expert can use 3D visualization using AR headsets to guide the field worker. 

Remote Assistance AR Business Applications  

Due to COVID-19, remote support has become an essential part of providing customer support. But old ways of remote support really didn’t work out in complex problem scenarios. And that is when the businesses started to realize the need for more immersive and interactive technology for remote support. 

Fortunately, AR tech has already been around for a while. With all the emerging technology coming in, implementing AR has become easier. AR technology efficiently provides technical information, guidance, content, and other support capabilities. 

Real-life applications of AR in businesses. 

Technical Support  

AR remote assistance can be used in various scenarios where a field worker needs to provide support remotely. For example, if there is an issue with an server equipment, an expert can help them through AR remote assistance and see their screen in real-time. 

This kind of assisted service can also be used when two technicians need to collaborate on solving a problem together. One expert can guide the other on what they are seeing on their end and work together on solving the issue at hand. 

This approach has many benefits for both the company. For one, it saves the company money by reducing travel expenses. And it also provides better quality service because it is less time-consuming than making a physical visit to the customer’s location. 

Field Services  

AR assistance allows enterprises to provide field services in a more efficient way. Gartner predicts that by 2025, 50% of field services will include mobile-based augmented reality tools collaboration. 

AR can help the technicians access the necessary instructions in real-time. Field service technicians are often required to work on complicated tasks that require a lot of training and expertise. With AR, they will have access to remote experts who can guide them through the process step-by-step. This will allow them to perform their job more efficiently and quickly, which saves time for both the technician and the company. 

This means that they don’t have to spend time on training or on-site visits, which not only saves money but also helps them provide better customer service. 

Maintenance  

Remote operations enabled by AR play the role of a game changer in maintenance. For example, maintenance of transmission lines, transceivers, multiplexers, etc., can be done effectively with QR markers on equipment. For systems and devices like radio, cables, electromagnetic systems, the supportive information including equipment specs, maintenance instructions, date of previous inspections, and repair made can be accessed effortlessly with AR. 

Bosch had been using AR solutions in their Bosch Car Service workshops. It includes navigation arrows which indicate the locations of the automobile components that aren’t easily visible. It also provides on-screen instructions to auto technicians about necessary actions to take or tools to use for fixing the problems. As per the company report, the auto technicians now spend 15% less time on each step of MRO activities compared to when they worked without AR. 

Audit & Inspection 

Remote operation through AR enables remote inspection of facilities like factory floors, assembly line, testing line, and let enterprises perform quality check audits remotely. It helps eliminate non-compliance through compliance SOPs checklists, and boost quality without spending hefty amount on visiting the facilities.  

Site inspectors and auditors can perform equipment inspections, and site audits remotely while utilizing SOPs and checklists, and can create inspection record log. The usage of AR also ensures that the steps are followed accurately without any misses.  

 

 Who Benefits from Using AR Remote Assistance?  

AR remote assistance is specifically beneficial for the frontline teams and experts. The remote support not only helps fix issues faster, but it also boosts the productivity of the frontline team. Additionally, it helps reduce costs for industries by eliminating truck rolls. 

Customers  

Customer prefer quick and immediate assistance. For example, in case of a vehicle breakdown, they would want the mechanic to reach their location in the shortest time possible to fix it. Using AR remote assistance, a mechanic can virtually visit the customer’s location and guide them for fixing the issue. 

Supervisors/Experts  

AR Remote Assistance can be a great solution for an industry like telecom where the domain experts are reaching retiring age. 

The most common use case for AR Remote Assistance in which it helps both field agents and experts by delivering remote assistance at scale. The AR Remote Assistance provides the field supervisors with an AR view of the remote system. The domain expert can use this AR view to help diagnose and resolve the issue without having to wait for the field agent to send in the information required for diagnosis. It saves time and money for the enterprise and makes the process quicker than usual. 

Industrial enterprises have observed up to 60% reduction in resolution time using AR remote assistance. 

 Field service organizations  

Field service organizations can benefit from using AR Remote Assistance by reducing costs and improving customer satisfaction. 

Companies that provide field services such as automobile, plumbing, HVAC, and electrical services need to be able to provide a quick response to their customers. This is because the customers expect a quick turnaround time for any issues that arise with their business. 

Field service organizations are finding that AR remote assistance is a cost-effective way to provide customer service. AR Remote Assistance can reduce the cost of field service teams by eliminating the need for travel. It has been shown to provide faster and more accurate solutions than traditional phone or chat support. 

Field service organizations can use AR remote assistance to help customers with their hardware, software, and configuration problems. They can also use it for on-site installation, training, and troubleshooting. 

With AR technology, field technicians can get the visuals of the components that need repair. So, technicians can also plan repairs prior to visiting the site. AR also helps in shortening resolution time by allowing technicians to get expert support in the field with the help of AR headsets like RealWear HMT-1.  

Which Industries Use Remote Assistance AR?  

AR remote assistance is being used by every industry, including telecommunication, automotive, manufacturing, IT, and more, for a variety of reasons. 

Enterprises use remote assistance AR to solve problems and get help from experts in the field. It allows the expert to give assistance remotely to the field worker troubleshooting complex issue. This is done by giving them visual and audio instructions on how to fix the problem. 

There are many other use cases of remote assistance AR. It can be used to provide on-the-spot technical support, through visual guidance over live video. This type of service is beneficial for enterprises with offices in remote locations and their field workers have to visit the customers often for fixing issues. 

Let’s take an example of a few industries using Remote Assistance AR. 

Manufacturing 

AR Remote assistance can be used for factory planning. Digital planning data can be directly overlaid onto views of the existing factory without the presence of a supervisor at the location. Using AR, a visual presentation of the existing plant combined with digital data can be achieved, leading to more planning reliability and consequently to a reduction in time and cost.  

AR can be useful in providing real-time AR-based visual updates of progress in production batches and reducing TAT in manufacturing arena. It can also help in detect and rectify issues in the production line instantly. Scheduled maintenance can be done remotely, and production downtime can be minimized by quickly identifying faulty machines. 

Workers can take expert help and collaborate without their field presence for faster and efficient troubleshooting of machine breakdown. Overlaying images and rendering of bolts, cables, part numbers, and instructions reduce the production time.   

Consumer goods manufacturing giant Unilever says that it has reduced 50% downtime in facilities where the AR remote assistance tools are in use. 

Automotive 

AR has an extensive practical application in the automotive industry. The application of augmented reality in the automotive industry can help firms streamline their processes, saving time, money, and human resources. From pre-production through after-sales, augmented reality promises to make employees’ jobs easier by providing an easy and interactive manner. AR Remote assistance can provide expert guidance through video and AR instructions presented as 3D digital assets simplify complex tools and machines installation. Commissioning can be done remotely with the help of integrated checklists which cuts down factory commissioning time. 

It also enables Instructors to perform training practices without dismantling and reassembling equipment. Workers can be trained through an interactive knowledge repository consisting of 3D workflows and annotations over equipment video & images. 

With the help of augmented reality, we can optimize the processes of prototyping and assembling various parts to be used. AR also helps auto mechanics to repair machines quickly and accurately.  

Communication Service Providers  

Communication service providers are increasingly using AR Remote Assistance to provide support to their customers. The communication service providers use remote assistance AR to provide customer service, technical support, and information services. It can be used in cases when the customer is not able to solve the issues, customers can share their views through AR headsets, and agents can guide them to make changes in devices like modems and routers. 

Workers using the AR enabled glasses are 15 percent more productive, according to DHL, a global logistics company. 

It provides the customer with a live view of the person who is fixing their device. It also has voice and video call capabilities, so they can interact with each other while they work on the device together. 

The benefits of Remote Assistance AR are that it can reduce the time needed for troubleshooting, it can provide remote support in an emergency situation, and it reduces travel costs for both parties. 

AR arrangements are ending up an amazing instrument for customers, and it’s likewise helping in the field. A similar innovation can help a link professional – frequently an outsider worker for hire – to perceive a large number of various gadgets, without the requirement for elaborative preparation. Utilizing AR the stage can perceive a great many various gadgets and work on the proficiency of field force laborers – while decreasing field activities cost by as much as 60%. 

Utility Companies  

Utility companies are more and more turning to remote assistance augmented reality (AR) to resolve queries. AR remote assistance can be used for a variety of purposes: troubleshooting, maintenance, installation, hazard reporting, emergency response, and more. Utility companies now have the ability to provide their customers with instant help from experts who can remotely guide them through their problems. It also promotes field safety which eventually results in more customer satisfaction. 

AR enhances learning processes by adding virtual objects, such as images and videos to the surrounding environment. This allows utility employees to get anything they need right in their field of vision, enabling a better understanding of the equipment and operational processes. AR can provide help to utility companies significantly improve their training programs, as well as prepare the highly qualified workforce. 

Utilizing AR, the data about the underground pipeline and the associated resources can be shown utilizing a 3D model with precise GPS locations. Field specialists can distinguish a resource outwardly through delivering (shape and shade of the resource), look into last fix or substitution history and get the important bits of knowledge, keeping away from any obstacles or revamp, and in this manner further developing the work quality. 

71% of consumers say they would pursue interest more often if they used AR in utilities. 

AR in utilities. 

AR Remote assistance have also come significantly long way and now meet the detailed site requirements directly related to safety and environment – a critical need for utilities.

How To Choose Your AR Remote Assistance Software?  

AR remote assistance software is a new way to connect people across the world. It can be used for many purposes, from an education perspective to a business one. There are various types of AR solutions on the market, so it can be difficult to choose which one is right for you. 

The first step toward choosing the right software is understanding your needs, which can be done by answering a few questions: 

  • What software do you use in your organization? 
  • What’s the number of people who will use the software? 
  • What type of remote assistance do you need? 
  • How often do you want to use AR remote assistance? 
  • How often do you experience downtime? 
  • How often your business suffers loss due to breakdowns? 
  • Are you frequently audited for compliances or TAT numbers? 
  • Do you have resources you wish were trained with right skills to resolve on field challenges?  

Even when the need is clear, it can be difficult to choose from so many AR software. So how can you differentiate between the AR software that will work best for your organization vs. the one which won’t? 

There are three common key areas that you should consider while choosing AR remote assistance software. These three key areas will fit most industries’ needs. 

Integration  

The AR solution should easily integrate with the software you use in your organization. Also, the transitional period should be minimal to save companies time and money. 

Compatibility  

The AR software should be compatible with multiple devices like mobile phones, tablets, wearables, smart glasses, and more. Also, it should support multiple operating systems. 

Features  

The AR software should have these key features 

  • Easy to use AR annotation tools 
  • Seamless file transfer capabilities for better connectivity 
  • Full privacy controls – safe 
  • Reporting and analytics tools 
  • CRM integration for better resolution of repetitive problems 
  • Embedded visual call script guidance 

AR software should have these key features

 AR Remote Assistance: Now and for the future 

With increasing use cases and capabilities of AR software, AR is going to change the way we provide remote assistance. The Global AR market is expected to surpass 97.76 billion US dollars in 2028 with an annual CAGR of a whopping 48.6%. With increasing adaptability across different industries, AR remote assistance is looking forward to a bright future ahead.  

Are you ready to deploy AR solutions at your enterprise? Plutomen is an Augmented Reality based SaaS platform that provides AR solutions to industrial enterprises for frontline digitalization. We help enhance frontline capacities through self-assisting resources and digitized workflows, and connect them with experts for remote collaboration. Book a demo of our AR products to get a detailed walkthrough by one of our experts!

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