What is Augmented Reality?  What are the differences between Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality?

What is Augmented Reality?  What are the differences between Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality?

The competitive business environment, the challenges raised by the COVID pandemic constrains and the technologies rapid evolution, have led to the promotion of the Augmented Reality in the companies internal and external communication process. Here, we refer to supporting the efforts of training at distance, promoting and launching products through new technologies, and these are just a few examples.

The Augmented Reality, definition and importance

The Augmented Reality is an innovative technology that has evolved significantly in the last years, reaching a high level of applicability in different industries. A widely accepted definition is the following: The Augmented Reality is an interactive experience that combines elements of the real world with elements of the virtual world, in the genre a real world augmented by the virtual environment. However, it also has an integrated human sensory dimension that can be played by visual, auditory, olfactory and/or somatosensory sensors. The most frequently used AR applications these days rely on smartphones to present the digital augmented world.

Users can enable a smartphone camera, view the real world around them on screen, and rely on an AR app to enhance this image through many digital products:

● overlapping of images, digital information and/or 3D models; ● adding real-time directions; ● insertion of labels; ● changing colors; ● modify the user appearance or its environment by “filters”; ● various devices can display AR and the list is growing: Screens, portable and mobile devices, as well as head mounted displays.

New technology redefines how you work, learn, communicate, interact, play.

Augmented Reality vs Virtual Reality

The two concepts are based on similar, but not identical, technologies. Virtual Reality is an experience in a virtual environment without sensory contact with your environment, while augmented reality overlays 3D objects on the real world, precisely to create the feeling that everything is “real”. Augmented reality is not a completely immersive experience such as virtual reality (VR), the second concept requires the use of a special headset.

Where is Augmented Reality used?

The new technology has been useful in almost any industry or domain, its main objectives being to improve processes and results.

Here are some areas where we find real Augmented Reality applications:

1. Training and education: Interactivity supported by AR-based applications allows people to perform new tasks more easily and faster than traditional training methods (such as instruction manuals). As portable devices dedicated to this technology become more widely available, the potential for training through Augmented Reality will be great. 2. Entertainment: Augmented reality has been the smart alternative for the entertainment industry over the last two years: Holograms of  artists performing on stage. A tour supported only by Augmented Reality technologies and the replacement of live performances (ABBA concert). 3. Gaming: Today, most games incorporate Augmented Reality elements. Pokémon is one of the best-known examples. 4. Selling and marketing: You can virtually try a variety of products before you buy, through Augmented reality applications. For example, “trying” the glasses frames without actually visiting a shop location or ordering samples. The real augmented applications for e-commerce will become a normality. The advantages of using AR are the best lawyer for the expansion and use of this technology in other areas, such as trade, healthcare, processing industry, utilities, telecommunications, education and public security

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