There has never been a better time to be a gamer. Globally, gaming is growing every year. By 2020 the worldwide gaming market is forecast to grow from 1.72 trillion U.S. dollars to 2.14 trillion. As gamers appetites for tech grow, so do the options available.

Look at how the gaming industry is looking to the future by promoting connectedness.

Online Gaming

The concept of online gaming has evolved more in the past decade than in its entire lifespan due to consumer demand. What makes them so popular? Besides the draw of easy-to-use mobile entertainment, online gamers gain access to community forums that offer tips and helpful advice for anyone struggling to get to the next level. Whether you choose forums for education, like having the history of craps explained before you actually play online, or forums for outreach where you build relationships with gamers with similar interests, it’s clear that the future of online gaming is indeed a bright one.

Virtual Reality

Since the introduction of virtual reality in 1991, some of the most influential industry leaders have continually advanced the science beyond our wildest imaginings. Today’s VR tech is leaps and bounds different from what it looked like 25 years ago and game developers are starting to cash in on this growing trend. In recent years developers have taken VR one step further by creating multiplayer interactive virtual/augmented reality gaming platforms that adults and children alike love.

VR is best defined as a computer-generated simulation of a three-dimensional image or environment that can be interacted with in a seemingly real or physical way by a person using special electronic equipment. One major criticism for the industry has held them back, however: as a solitary activity, this type of gaming tends to promote isolationism. Well, no more! Industry experts have interpreted data, taken into account the full evolution of gaming and finally cracked the code. By offering community-based platforms, users are better able to keep grounded in the real world. With crowd favorites like Keep Talking and Nobody Dies, users are challenged to solve difficult puzzles and diffuse virtual bombs – think of it as a modern-day team-building exercise with a twist.

Augmented Reality

Augmented Reality, or AR, is defined as a technology that superimposes a computer-generated image on a user’s view of the real world, thus providing a composite view. While a relatively newer form of virtual-based technology, AR has truly revolutionized our understanding of what it means to interact physically with real-time digital creations. Pokémon Go hit the scene in 2016 and changed the gaming industry forever. With its location-based interface, the mobile-app allows users to capture, battle and train virtual “pocket-monsters.” That’s not even the best part! This AR technology actually promotes physical activity as well because players must actually travel to explore the world around them. To date, users who regularly participate in Pokémon Go’s interface have banked an impressive 144 billion steps worldwide!

Virtual reality gaming platforms that allow you to be transported to fantastic new worlds aren’t a new concept for today’s consumer. The advances made to the technology that allow users to get up, interact with their environment and connect with other users, however, make for a whole new frontier in gaming.