What was the idea behind starting XR Labs? What led to the inception of the company?
As mechanical engineers, both my co-founder and I, could think of multiple problem statements in the industrial sector that needed to be catered to. In 2014, with the resurgence of extended reality (XR) technologies, such as AR and VR, we saw great potential in the industrial space. We started XR Labs for real-life innovations rather than the gaming use cases that the general XR market was focused on then.
What sets apart your company from other immersive reality solutions providers in the market?
The key differentiator is our experience with enterprises and enterprise IT environments. Ever since inception, we have been working with the leading players in almost every industry. This is important, as XR digital transformation is already a new initiative for many enterprises, our success stories of relevant sectors and companies have been a major contributing factor for the confidence in both the technology, and us as a partner. We are an engineering solutions company that specialises in XR solutions, not the other way around.
You offer services in various sectors, from automotive to entertainment. In terms of being receptive, which have been the most and least receptive sectors? How are you improving your presence in the sectors least receptive?
The traction of XR solutions closely follows the cost of it. Back in 2015, when the total cost of ownership of XR solutions was 10x of what it is right now, only the industries with safety, risks and cost concerns, such as energy, oil & gas, maritime and defence, were looking to implement the solutions. Today, with the drastic fall in the XR’s hardware cost (almost by 90%), we see high traction in nearly every industry, from automotive to pharma. The only sector where usage of XR has been lacking is BFSI, as it involves intangible processes. We are developing solutions, such as data visualisation in XR and soft skill training, to cater to their unique requirements.
COVID was particularly a difficult time for start-ups. How did the period fare for your organisations?
Like any other enterprise, we faced logistical and business continuity issues. COVID has had a positive impact factor for the long-term when it comes to the business influx. While deals did vanish in Q1 2020, things started looking extremely good by June 2020. A great positive impact has been on the scale of implementation. We see that organisations are already sold on the idea of XR and want to it implement at scale and a rapid pace.
As we enter 2022, can you elaborate on what is in store for your company?
2022 is a year like no other for us. We will be hitting the road to raise capital after six years of bootstrapping, strengthening our cost-effectiveness and refining our plans of scaling up. We’ve always been a partner-driven company, but now with the expanded portfolio and a matured business ecosystem, we are looking to grow wider and deeper across industries and geographies.