No one can deny the widespread use cases for various XR technologies. XR encompasses these three types of tech: augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), and mixed reality (MR). As XR advances, more applications emerge.

The combination of XR and DevOps — software development plus IT operations — is what Microsoft and RE’FLEKT, a leading company focused on providing business solutions using AR and VR technologies, are experimenting with right now.

Essentially, each company brings value to the table in terms of developing and advancing AR technologies. One goal formed from this partnership is to further enhance the customer experience (CX) by offering top-tier customer support.

Let’s explore current developments in XR technology and how one tech company is furthering its mission of providing ultimate customer support.

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Microsoft and RE’FLEKT: Developing a Tele-Service Platform

While some believe the primary use case for XR tech is entertainment in video games, there are plenty of other ways XR can be used in the corporate world.

For example, XR can be leveraged by health care facilities to support medical student training, or construction companies can use it to map out a job site. These are only some examples, but let’s take a look at how Microsoft plans to use XR to enhance customer support efforts.

Microsoft announced its plans to modernize customer support by combining XR and DevOps with the help of a partnership with RE’FLEKT. The end product is called the Tele-Service platform, and its main purpose is to help companies provide smart visual services to customers.

The goal with this advanced platform is for users to dial into a company to reach the appropriate expert on a pair of AR smart glasses, a smartphone, or a tablet. From there, the expert can view what the customer sees and advise them on fixing any problems.

To achieve this, representatives from both companies engaged in testing and developing on the front and back ends. Still, why does the combination of XR and DevOps matter? Let’s discuss.

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XR and DevOps: The Future of AR/VR?

DevOps is essentially when two departments, specifically IT and software development, work together by bringing experts and technology from both sides of the partnership.

The team was made up of DevOps professionals from Microsoft and Developers from RE’FLEKT to work on the project and hackfest. Each group had skills to share with the team.

When a company has a DevOps-centered mindset, it sets it up for success in profitability and market competitiveness.

Companies can evolve products much more quickly compared to competitors that fail to employ DevOps practices. Additionally, companies utilizing this mindset deploy new software features and patches 200 times more often than competitors.

This will directly change the customer experience. When more features and patches are released more often, customers will be able to reap the benefits of the software and use it more effortlessly. Here are some other benefits that DevOps offers to a team:

  • Improved software quality
  • Tightens software security
  • Improves software release cycles
  • Streamlines software feedback from customers

Because there’s a high adoption rate for XR technology, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that DevOps would come into play for some companies looking to improve existing software for AR/VR products.

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The Role of AR/VR in CX

One driving factor fueling the growth of AR/VR technology is the Covid-19 pandemic. Because companies want to offer robust customer support from a safe distance, they’re beginning to look into AR/VR options to accomplish this.

The companies that employ DevOps practices and continue to develop XR post-sales customer support will stand out from their competitors because they’re taking the customer journey into account.

Once a customer purchases a product, they can simply pop on their AR glasses to receive efficient support if they run into issues. It’s a win-win situation for both companies and customers when DevOps can be used to advance XR technology further. CX is becoming more prevalent in many industries — in fact, many CMOs rank CX as a top priority for their company.

CX is more than just offering support. It’s taking every step of the customer journey and minimizing the need for human touchpoints, and eliminating potential pain points. This will be a differentiating feature for companies working with AR/VR technologies.

Combine DevOps With XR for Further Advancement

The Microsoft and RE’FLEKT partnership shows us how valuable a role DevOps plays in developing revolutionary technology. As more companies implement AR/VR technology into their operations, it’ll be interesting to see how it positively impacts customers using these new products and services.

April Miller is a senior writer at ReHack Magazine and editorial contributor at AR Insider. She specializes in VR/AR, IoT, and business technology. See her work here and follow her @rehackmagazine.

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