Last month, Canada-based ARHT Media launched HoloPod, a 3-D display system that beams presenters into meetings and conferences they otherwise might not be able to attend. That same month, the 3-D graphics company Imverse was recognized at the global tech conference CES for software that enables hologram collaboration within virtual meeting rooms. Last year, Spatial enabled holographic-style virtual meetings on Oculus Quest.
Others are racing to develop similar Web conferencing capabilities under the notion that holograms are more engaging to work with than tiles of faces on a computer screen. On the fringe for years, workplace holograms would give employees the ability to read body language and other physical reactions in cyberspace. The digital illusions might also foster greater collaboration and communication among colleagues unable to interact in the real world.
“As you look to that hybrid model, companies are going to have to innovate around that interplay between the remote employee experience and in-office employee experience,” said Lisa Walker, the vice president of brand at Fuze, a teleconferencing service. “The technologies that can solve for that are going to pop.”
A January workplace survey by PWC found that most executives and employees expect a hybrid workplace to kick off in the second quarter of this year. A separate survey by the National Association for Business Economics found that only 11 percent of the employees are expected to return to their pre-pandemic working arrangements. Corporate travel is expected to remain slashed.