- AR vs. VR is one of the more popular discussions to come out of the technology industry. With every new advancement and skill in mixed reality, it becomes more apparent that augmented reality is what will be our preferred medium in the future. However, with so many options for both platforms, figuring out which is better and why can feel like a lost cause.
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How is AR and VR different? AR vs. VR is one of the more popular discussions to come out of the technology industry. With every new advancement and skill in mixed reality, it becomes more apparent that augmented reality is what will be our preferred medium in the future. However, with so many options for both platforms, figuring out which is better and why can feel like a lost cause. But what really is the difference between AR and VR?
Some people are confused about what AR vs. VR really means. It’s like the name itself. You can’t just have one without the other. However, before we begin on why and how they are different, let’s look at what an AR headset is and how it operates.
What is Augmented Reality?
Augmented reality (AR) is an experience that merges the real world with digital information on top of it. An example is when you buy a new pair of shoes online. The sales associate shows how they would look on your feet by placing them on top of a pile of shoes in front of you. This way, you get to see before purchasing them to know exactly what size they will fit after buying them.
Augmented reality is all about virtualizing information on top of the real world. If it’s possible to overlay information on top of the real world, it’s considered AR. Take an example of Pokemon Go for instance, players will see their avatar walking around in the streets or parks just like they would in reality. They can walk around doors and interact with people at the same time in real time because they’re not really in another place.
How is AR and VR different?
VR headsets are exclusively there to be immersed in a virtual world. By immersing yourself into a virtual world, you are free to do whatever you want with no restrictions. However, with all this freedom, there’s no way of knowing if things in the virtual world are real or not. This is where augmented reality steps up and offers something VR can’t give at this moment: believability and realism.
AR is the best when it comes to offering realistic things in an immersive experience. For instance, if you are holding a banana in front of you, you will have the feeling that it’s really there. Likewise, if one was to physically touch the banana in question, it would feel like it’s real as well. There are many AR applications out there that can make virtual objects seem real using cameras and data mapping technology.
When people talk about Virtual Reality (VR), it means a total complete immersion experience into a virtual world with no relation to reality. This is similar to being in the movie Avatar where you can feel and experience things within the virtual world that may or may not even exist. Using VR technology can be a very immersive experience, but it’s not just limited to entertainment.
VR headsets have grown to become some of the most popular tech this year because they are fully immersive and realistic. It completely immerses you into different worlds; whether it’s 1920’s, 60’s, or even on Mars, there are almost no limits as to what you can do in VR. The only limitation is your imagination. However, with this kind of immersive technology comes a lot of concerns and issues many people cannot overlook due to their comfort level and expectations.
How VR Headsets Work
The reality is that VR and AR headsets are very similar in technology. The only difference is the way how they deliver their content to users. The Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Samsung Gear VR and many more work the same way. They come with a headset connected to a device that processes all the visuals and delivers them to the headset. This means you will see holographic images projected into your view from both controllers and sensors located around you. Unfortunately, while you may think this sounds cool, it can actually cause some problems such as headaches, nausea, dizziness, eye strain and fatigue.
Advantages of Augmented Reality
One of the biggest pros of AR technology is that it stays in the physical world without disturbing anything around you. This means you don’t have to worry about tripping over wires or hinges. There is no need for wires because you get to wear the headset as it is intended to be worn. This also applies to all of the ar devices out there.
It also offers free-hand interaction that feels very natural and realistic when compared to vr headsets. You can operate your phone and other devices with ease while in AR because they will be placed at eye level. Furthermore, since the experience doesn’t involve any motion sickness, getting seasick or even nauseous becomes a thing of the past.
The best part about AR technology is the fact that it gives you the option to decide which reality you want to live in. You don’t have to wear a headset if you don’t want to. This is not the case with VR because once you put on a headset, you will get totally immersed into a virtual world and there is no way of returning to reality without it.
What is google cardboard?
Google Cardboard is a virtual reality headset made by Google. It works with Android phones and other smartphones. The user places their phone in the headset and can interact with various 3D apps such as Google Earth, YouTube, and Street View. It can also be used to play video games and computer generated applications.
Augmented and virtual reality technology are both being used in medical care, entertainment, architecture and many more fields that require support from technology. They have grown to become some of the most popular tech because they both offer something different that can be beneficial for everyday use as well as several niche uses. With that kind of promise, it’s hard not to see what these technologies can do in the future.
Both AR and VR are fascinating for tech geeks and enthusiasts alike, especially with the amount of technology utilized in both areas. The technologies have their pros and cons but most importantly, we all have to decide which one is the better fit for our needs. It’s up to us to decide which one works best for us as individuals. For some people, it could be VR, while for others, it could be AR.
Read more about AR here.