How IoT and Augmented Reality Will Disrupt Federal Tech

Supphachai Salaeman/

Such a future may only be a few years away, according to a new report.

Imagine a hyperconnected government that anticipates the needs of its citizens, that runs on modern IT systems and actually employs cutting-edge augmented and virtual reality systems to better engage its growing data sets.

Such a future may only be a few years away, according to Deloitte, which this week released its Tech Trends 2016 report.

The report dissects several trends in technology, including the Internet of Things, augmented and virtual reality systems, modernizing core systems, leveraging virtualization, industrialized analytics and even technology’s moral implications, offering detailed use cases from various business sectors in each.

Perhaps the most important lesson to federal agencies is the necessity to modernize outdated IT systems to better handle the deluge of data and increased connectivity that is inevitable as the Internet of Things approaches.

“To help core systems fulfill this latest mission, organizations should take steps to modernize the underlying technology stack, making needed investments grounded in outcomes and business strategy,” the report stated. “By reimagining the core in this way, companies can extract more value from long-term assets while reinventing the business for the digital age.”

For those familiar with the bureaucratic slowness that tends to permeate the public sector whenever technology is involved, harnessing technologies like augmented reality might seem like a stretch.

But think again, the report states, because the augmented reality and virtual reality market could eclipse $150 billion by 2020.  The report cites real-world examples of field technicians wearing geo-tagged helmets that enable them to view multiple data overlays containing design, technical and other data sets of physical structures.

Agency chief information officers and technology policymakers should keep an open mind about the technology’s uses.

“Executives raised on Gene Roddenberry, George Lucas and Michael Crichton may be at once curious and dubious about what augmented reality and virtual reality are and, more importantly, how they might impact business,” the report stated.

But the benefits to agencies and businesses “will likely outpace consumer adoption cycles,” the report argues.