New Study Reveals 26 Percent of U.S. Adults Have Used Augmented Reality

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New data from ARtillery Intelligence and Thrive Analytics reveals who's using mobile AR apps, how often, and in what categories.

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"Gaming and social are typically where new consumer technologies germinate. But history tells us that sustained value and frequent use will develop around utilities that solve everyday problems." -Mike Boland Chief Analyst of ARtillery Intelligence

Thrive Analytics and ARtillery Intelligence today released a new report: AR Usage & Consumer Attitudes, Wave III. ARtillery Intelligence authored survey questions and a narrative report while Thrive Analytics administered the survey through its established survey engine and ongoing Virtual Reality Monitor™ research.

Highlights include the fact that 26 percent of consumers have used mobile augmented reality (AR). More importantly, they're using it often: almost half of respondents use mobile AR at least weekly. This is telling indication of mobile AR's potential, given that active use is a key mobile app success factor and tied closely to revenue metrics

The top mobile AR app category today is gaming, followed by social. These are driven by popular AR apps and features, such as Pokemon Go and Snapchat AR lenses. Both categories will continue to lead mobile AR according to ARtillery Intelligence, but others will emerge, such as everyday utilities like visual search that lets users “search what you see”. This can already be seen in a 13-point increase in visual search usage over Wave II of the research.

“Gaming and social are typically where new consumer technologies germinate,” said Mike Boland, Chief Analyst of ARtillery Intelligence. “But history tells us that sustained value and frequent use will develop around utilities that solve everyday problems. We’re seeing the first signs of that in visual search tools Like Google Lens, Pinterest Lens and Snapchat Scan.”

The Virtual Reality Monitor™ applies Thrive Analytics' acumen and time-tested practices in survey research. The AR survey in this wave (Wave III) included a sample of more than 1,000 U.S. adults. Thrive and ARtillery Intelligence will continue to analyze the AR & VR market opportunities through the lens of consumer sentiments.

“AR and VR are still in early-adoption phases,” said Thrive Analytics managing partner Jason Peaslee. “There are still technology challenges, but we think AR & VR have the ability to transform the way people work, connect, and learn. We’re excited about the prospects, and committed to measuring them.”

Report Availability
AR Usage & Consumer Attitudes, Wave III is available through ARtillery Intelligence. Deeper access to the base data and additional strategic analysis can be obtained from Thrive Analytics.

About ARtillery Intelligence
ARtillery Intelligence chronicles the evolution of spatial computing, otherwise known as AR and VR. Through writings and multimedia, it provides deep and analytical views into the industry’s biggest players, opportunities and strategies. Products include the AR Insider publication and the ARtillery PRO research subscription. Research includes monthly narrative reports, market- sizing forecasts, consumer survey data and multimedia, all housed in a robust intelligence vault. To learn more, go to

About Thrive Analytics
Thrive Analytics is a leading digital marketing research and customer engagement consulting firm. With clients spanning leading national brands as well as publishers and agencies serving the small business community, it pairs proprietary market research services and data analytical tools with time tested business insights and methodologies to help organizations measurably improve customer experience, loyalty and sales results. Its mission is to provide superior research and support services that inspire clients to make smarter decisions. Learn more or contact Thrive Analytics at

About The Virtual Reality Monitor™
The Virtual Reality Monitor™ is Thrive Analytics’ proprietary survey of virtual reality/augmented reality technology users. These surveys, conducted semiannually, track the adoption rates, usage, satisfaction levels, profiles and many other areas related to VR/AR users. Each wave has a customizable section for client specific inquiries. Results & key insights are communicated in advisory reports & presentations, charts & infographics, newsletters & articles and custom data views. Information from these studies are used by marketers, product managers, consultants and other people working in the technology space.

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Mike Boland
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