Event Holograms: Q&A with Larry O’Reilly

A man staring at a hologram in a 3D rendered dark room.

Say hologram to an event professional, and many think Tupac at Coachella or Whitney Houston in Las Vegas.

“But from the early years when the technology first appeared, it has dramatically changed,” said Larry O’Reilly, CEO of ARHT Media, a pioneer in the field of holographic telepresence.

Using hologram technology is no longer limited to big-budget events or sci-fi movies. “Today, we have capabilities to deliver live holograms of speakers with little to no latency for real-time interactions with an audience of any size and costs have been reduced dramatically,” shared O’Reilly in a recent chat.

“If you’re looking to make a greater impact and create a ‘WOW!’ moment at an in-person event, a hologram presenter is the way to go,” said O’Reilly. “Clients have shared their audience research that shows speakers presenting holographically score higher than those presenting in person—it’s not a substitute for being there, it’s more impactful than being there in person.”

With screen fatigue a real challenge, O’Reilly believes event organizers should consider moving away from the boxed layout of a typical streaming call. “Significantly improving engagement and the event experience with multiple holograms will look and feel more like a TV production than an online meeting—and at a fraction of the cost.”

What are interesting ways event planners can incorporate holograms at their events? “A few of my favorites have been beaming in a bridesmaid from London to attend a wedding during a Covid lockdown or presenters from New York onto a yacht in Antarctica, and Live Nation’s personal concert experience at Rogers 5G,” shared O’Reilly. He also thinks event audiences will love “a pre-recorded hologram having a conversation with their future self live on stage.”

How Event Organizers Should Think Ahead About Holograms

Bloomberg has predicted hologram technology will be worth $4.48 billion by 2024, and is up 15% CAGR year on year—so it’s definitely something to have on the radar according to O’Reilly.

“Planning the experience in advance is critically important so you can compliment the speaker with additional hologram content or even have the display integrated into your stage more seamlessly,” said O’Reilly. Andrew Williams, CEO of DHL Canada, appeared via ARHT’s HoloPresence hologram at a senior management meeting proving, O’Reilly says, “that all one has to do is come by a HoloPresence-enabled location across the globe and you can appear remotely as a hologram virtually anywhere else or on our Virtual Global Stage”.

O’Reilly will provide additional tips and best practices during his upcoming session at the one-day virtual Innovation and Growth Summit, organized by the Event Leadership Institute.

The Summit, which is designed to showcase evolving event tech, the science of audience engagement, and the latest innovative thinking from over a dozen thought-leaders, will take place on April 20 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. EDT.

In addition to O’Reilly’s session, event participants will earn tips for maximizing meaningful connections at hybrid, virtual, and in-person events, and gain insights on how to reinvent and reimagine events with an innovation mindset.

Learn more and register here.

See a whole roster of classes available through Event Leadership Institute’s partnership with Smart U here.

 

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