Augmented reality (or AR) is a technology that lets users place digital objects on top of the real world. Today it’s mostly used through smartphones, but some companies like Microsoft and Magic Leap have released full AR headsets.

You’ve probably been messing around with AR recently and haven’t even realized it. Which Disney character are you on IG? Or which Pokemon? Both of those trending filters are basic versions of augmented reality technology. 

Ever heard of the band Pearl Jam? They just recently used AR to announce their new album. The band posted an interactive map on its website with coordinates from around the globe. Fans who trekked to the locations found huge AR billboards marked with the word “Gigaton,” which turns out to be the title of the album. 

After viewing the boards through Instagram’s “Gigaton” filter, fans were treated to animations and a short audio clip of new music. 

A few days later bazillionaire Mark Zuckerburg announced he expects a massive breakthrough in AR technology this decade. He noted that last decade was the breakthrough of the cell phone and “at some point in the 2020s, we will get breakthrough augmented reality glasses that will redefine our relationship with technology.”

Sounds pretty serious. 

This past weekend at the CES 2020 convention, the global stage where next-generation innovations are introduced to the marketplace, AR solutions were heavily present. Particularly among major automakers and streaming companies.  

All signs point to big news coming soon…

Keep an eye on these trends in 2020.