It is almost indisputable that smartglasses and head-worn displays are the future of augmented reality. However, at this precise moment, they are still a very niche market.
This time last year, we got our first taste of what mobile app developers could do in augmented reality with Apple's ARKit. Most people had never heard of Animojis. Google's AR platform was still Tango. Snapchat introduced its World Lens AR experiences. Most mobile AR experiences existing in the wild were marker-based offerings from the likes of Blippar and Zappar or generic Pokémon GO knock-offs.
Welcome to the first annual Next Reality 30, our list of people who've made the biggest impact on the augmented reality space in the last 12 months — and what a 12-month roller-coaster ride it's been. Apple introduced ARKit-powered apps last fall, Google launched ARCore for Android soon after, Snapchat began monetizing AR, and the Magic Leap One headset finally came out. These are historic times.