At PRELOADED, we don’t think of ourselves as a tech company. That might sound a little strange coming from an immersive game studio, but the fact is that’s not how we see ourselves. We build with technology, but the key principles for what we do (and the vision that drives projects forward) are based on audience and purpose. 

However, the possibilities for what we create for audiences are enabled by technology, and those possibilities are evolving faster than ever. 

As a studio obsessed with making complexity simple, articulating this moving target in a straightforward framework has been on our to-do list for 2020. This post is just that: A recap of how we talk with partners about technology and the New Play Space.


We see these three technology areas enabling the future of play, or what we call the “New Play Space”. 

  • Computation is the area in which technologies are helping computers get smarter. These technologies, such as AI, computer vision, and machine learning, facilitate a more intuitive understanding of our world and ourselves.
  • Connectivity is where we see a rapidly evolving infrastructure that enables greater quality content and more accurate positioning data for audiences on the move, such as 5G and location services. 
  • Hardware encompasses developments in manufacturing and engineering. These developments are responsible for smaller, better, and increasingly surprising ways to see, hear, touch, and experience digital content.


The purpose of this framework is to focus our attention on where emerging technologies have the greatest transformative impact in terms of value for the audience. Of course, each area holds millions of fascinating possibilities to innovate, but it’s at their intersection where the future of play – near and far – sits. 

A great example of the intersection of hardware and computation happening today is the LidAR camera on the latest iPhone. Put in the hands of the audiences, LidAR offers the promise of radically enhanced world context for mobile XR experiences

Another example is at the cross-over of computation and connectivity, where audiences can experience movie-quality VFX as part of location-based play via ultra-fast networks & edge computing.

Looking further ahead, hollow-hardware sits in the intersection of hardware and connectivity, allowing increasingly sophisticated technological experiences to be delivered at lower price points. This has the potential to transform the connected play market and reduce the cost of mass consumer devices.

And what might sit in the center? When optics manufacturing can match the aspiration, when 5G is pervasive and when machine learning reaches a satisfactory level of schematic understanding of our world, the promise of hands-free, light-weight untethered XR glasses will be realised. 

The continued evolution of the underlying technologies – and the audience experiences which they make possible – will ultimately net together. This will create a connected and pervasive layer of digital on top of our physical world – establishing the metaverse, or immersive web.


Alongside the possibilities enabled by technology, one key thing stands out to me: as tech gets smarter, better, lighter, faster, smaller, and quicker it also gets more invisible. This is perhaps the most exciting possibility of all. One where tech gets out of the way, supporting our natural instincts to play. Not dictating them. Enhancing our world. Not distracting from it.

And as 2021 brings an even bigger need for people to interact with the physical world, and with each other, we’re pretty sure that’s exactly what we all want from technology. 

If you are interested in exploring the New Play Space and its possibilities for your organisation and audience drop us a line, or sign up to the New Play Space newsletter here

What’s next in play?
Sign-up to The New Play Space
and join the conversation.
Phil Stuart

Phil is PRELOADED's founder and Executive Creative Director. He is passionate about the possibility space created by emerging and converging technologies, and inventing new forms of play with purpose.