When Cannabis and AR Collide

by | Mar 12, 2019

Written by Tiffaney Conner

Picture a holographic budtender providing a consumer with educational information about the latest strain of cannabis from the comfort of a couch or a three-dimensional floating bud in their living room. Imagine being able to view what a growing crop looks like from an office computer. Nextech AR Solutions CEO Evan Gappelberg is merging two of the fastest growing businesses on the planet today by bringing augmented reality (AR) to the cannabis industry for a realistic consumer experience never experienced before.

In a press release, NexTech reveals the future of e-commerce, and it is launching within the cannabis industry.

The AR industry as a whole has an average of 86% compounded annual growth rate, with some sectors growing even faster. Augmented reality has been studied for decades and is now predicted to have a breakout year in 2019. NexTech has seized the future of the legal cannabis industry, combined it with innovative technology, and is focused on creating the best AR solution for the masses.

ARitizing the World

NexTech has a trademark name for turning something from 2D into 3D called ARitizing. With the ability to ARitize cannabis, it becomes volumetric, and it actually feels like the bud is in the room with the consumer. The virtual experience enables consumers on all levels to learn about the properties and effects of specific plants on an interactive and realistic platform.

Actually, NexTech has encompassed an end-to-end solution for the entire cannabis industry. Starting at the beginning of the supply chain, the growers can capture a 3D image of their flower to then market to dispensaries. The special 3D camera takes over 5000 pictures which enable an up-close 3D view of the trichomes and a clear 360° view of the buds. For dispensary owners, the option to preview products or to allow the consumer at home to view them has created innovative opportunities for interaction. The ability to cooperate so closely on a 3D level also introduces higher education in a novel way. The cannabis bud can become an educational piece of content allowing consumers in-depth knowledge of the strain.

The Future of Cannabis Education for All

NexTech has designed a seamless, white-label web-based solution no an app required. The ease of having a website enables the whole supply chain to benefit from ease and convenience. Through the magic of a simple embed code, both businesses and consumers are empowered to preview products like flower, gear, and pre-rolls on the company website. The options for learning about, ordering and the ability to research products can be done in the discretion and comfort of one’s home.

Educational opportunities will be created with virtual budtenders answering personal questions customized to the individual consumer. Eventually, with the addition of AI, the budtender holograms will be able to recognize facial features during the conversation which becomes more user exclusive. The sky is the limit within the cannabis industry and technology is continuously evolving with time, necessity and innovation.

Gappelberg predicts, over the next decade, everything in many homes will be based in 3D and augmented reality. “Everything up until now is just foundational. In the next 24 months the world will change as we know it and become an interactive fully immersive experience with digital twins of everything everywhere, we won’t be able to tell what’s real and what’s not, I’m not going to judge if thats good or bad, I just know it will be super exciting.” With a very successful background in finance on Wall Street, Gappelberg has an honed his skills for finding the next big thing, and with this winning combination; he may have just found two coincidently.

Gappelberg was introduced to the cannabis industry in 2013 when he identified it as the next emerging advance in the economy. He started investing in cannabis stocks and learning more about the industry. In 2016 he co-founded Future Farm Technologies creating a cannabis IPO. The summer of 2017 was the crux when he was introduced to AR and realized it was going to be significant in the future. Gappelberg appreciates when things happen naturally in the universe because he has been riding the frequency of discovering new things at the right time. He organized his business model, created his team and together they have created the AR Dispensary experience which has resulted in the introduction of the cannabis industry meeting up with the future of technology. The estimate of spending on legal cannabis worldwide is expected to reach $57 billion by 2027 according to ArcView Market Research and BDS Analytics.

NexTech AR is the first publicly traded pure-play AR Company and is listed on both the OTCQB: NEXCF and the CSE; NTAR. As pioneers of the cannabis and technology market combination, Gappelberg believes this combination appeals to millennials. He sees the cannabis business as a title wave and demand and AR emerging into people’s everyday lives as being imminent. His advice would be to hold on because the demand for both is insatiable. Gappelberg predicts when he looks back at this breakthrough in 5 to 10 years from now, he can say “we did something special and were the first pure play AR company to go public.”