Adobe’s Scott Belsky says that augmented reality will be as big or bigger than the Web itself. “Augmented reality, to me, is the next major medium,” says Belsky. “I actually would go on the record saying that I think someday AR will be as big, if not bigger, than the Web because it will literally be everywhere.”
Scott Belsky is an internet visionary who co-founded Behance which was acquired by Adobe in 2012. Belsky is currently Chief Product Officer and Executive Vice President, Creative Cloud for Adobe. He also has a new book out, The Messy Middle: Finding Your Way Through the Hardest and Most Crucial Part of Any Bold Venture.
The Age of Artificial Intelligence
This is probably the most exciting part of my job is thinking about these future mediums. Everyone is going to have to take them into consideration. If those terms sounded new to any of your viewers, it’s a problem, and for a few reasons.
On the AI side, every company has a lot of data on its customers that they need to use to make the customer experience better. Customers are going to stop being forgiving of presumptuous defaults that don’t work for them, of questions that they should know the answer to already.
In the Age of AI, Customers Will Expect Personalization
Customers are going to expect a personalized experience because we’re in the age of AI. That starts with instrumenting your services and products to start collecting the right data. Then it means hiring a team that can understand and starts to extrapolate some lessons from that data. Then it also means designing products to take it into account, which is personalization.
It’s a real vector of the future. I think that companies are going to start competing on the data that they have to enable a better customer experience for their customers. I think that every company, especially big ones if they don’t start to leverage their understanding of their customers, they will be trampled by those that can. We can talk more about that.
Augmented Reality Will Be Bigger than the Web
Augmented reality, to me, is the next major medium. I actually would go on the record saying that I think someday AR will be as big, if not bigger, than the Web because it will literally be everywhere. It will be a layer on everything we see. We will walk down the street, and we will know who we know was everywhere and what their ratings were. Yelp will come alive to us, right? Directions will be transformed. There will be LinkedIn bubbles over everyone’s heads. You’ll have this amazing amount of knowledge and insight about everyone in every room you enter.
Then, if you take those glasses off or whatever you’re looking through, you’ll feel somewhat dumb. You’re like be like, “Oh, my goodness. I don’t know my connections to anyone around here. I don’t know. There’s nothing left for me here. There are no remnants from when I was here last and my old notes.” You’ll want to put it back on. That is this future world.
At Adobe, we think about the fact that that world will be very dry if it isn’t rich with creativity and content. That’s why we’re very focused on the future of augmented reality from the creative tooling and marketing analytics perspective.
Expectation That We Can Talk to Any App or Device
Let’s talk about Voice for a moment. I think we’re going to have an expectation that we can talk to any application or device that is in our lives and ask simple questions and get very, very quick answers. Look no further than anyone who has young kids. They can’t necessarily navigate to a song on Spotify on a phone or whatever, but they can ask for the song from Alexa, and they can use that all day. It’s very, very, very powerful. [There’s] a lot of design implications for voice interfaces as well, and that’s why these new mediums are super exciting, ripe with challenges, but everyone has to start thinking about them.