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What is the difference between AR and VR?

AR and VR are two closely related but distinct technologies. Both are used in a variety of settings, from video gaming to education, but each has its own unique capabilities and limitations.

What is AR?

Augmented reality (AR) is a technology that allows you to interact with computer-generated elements inserted in your environment. These digital elements convey sensory information (visual and auditory) to enhance reality.

Augmented reality is an interactive process, and it can be created using specific software, mobile apps, and hardware, such as glasses.

What is VR?

Virtual reality (VR) is an immersive experience in which the user is virtually transported to a computer-generated 360°environment using an eye-covering headset. The user can engage in several different actions,m including moving objects, in a virtual location.

The user is fully integrated into a simulation, which is enhanced by audio and visual elements to make the experience as realistic as possible. Some VR equipment includes more heightened senses, such as touch.

The Differences Between AR and VR

Both technologies rely on simulated realities, but the work of AR developers differs significantly from that of VR developers.

Augmented reality works with interactivity and integration. In other words, AR users interact with digital elements integrated into the real world. In most cases, this can be achieved using smartphones or tablet screens.

In turn, with virtual reality, the user puts on an eye-covering headset and headphones. The real world is then completely replaced with a virtual one. So unlike AR, which combines real and digital elements, VR eliminates reality and transports the user to a dimension where nearly everything is possible.

Applications

As both augmented and virtual reality evolve, they become increasingly present in our daily lives. And not only are they more present, but they have also become active fools that help us perform the simplest to the most complex tasks.

Some of the virtual reality’s main applications in the real world are:

Healthcare

This technology has proven to be efficient in training new doctors, namely in sensitive procedures, such as surgeries.

Entertainment

Video and computer gaming, mobile gaming and apps, and even movies can be a lot more fun when you can interact physically with the characters and the environment.

Car Industry

Virtual reality has paved the way for the development of smart cars that make driving significantly easier.

Education

Students and teachers can also benefit from the use of virtual reality. It can provide interactive, learning activities and also make field trips more accessible.

Architecture

Virtual reality allows architects to envision their work while developing it. It helps them fix any errors they might encounter, improve the overall project, and even present a virtual prototype to the client.

Tourism

You can visit an array of landmarks, landscapes, and local hotels, and even go on guided tours using only virtual reality.

And what about the applications of AR?

It is true that augmented reality and virtual reality share a few applications, but the user experience differs. We can find AR technology in varied fields, such as:

Marketing

Many companies use augmented reality to promote their business with appealing marketing campaigns.

Medical Training

Augmented reality is a useful tool for medical students to practice all types of procedures.

Retail

Clothing shops, furniture shops, hardware shops, and other kinds of businesses use this technology to provide a simpler user experience. Instead of trying out dozens of clothes or spending hours visualising how a certain couch would look in your living room, augmented reality technology and your mobile phone simplify it for you.

Repair and Maintenance

The world of maintenance can also become much simpler with the help of technology that provides information on what is broken and how to fix it.

Public Safety

First responders can benefit from using AR because it can help detect potential threats more quickly

Entertainment

The world of gaming is also a huge fan of interactive technologies that enhance the gamer experience.

Conclusion

Despite their differences, augmented reality and virtual reality are very similar technologies. And their real-world applications can not only be entertaining but even life-changing if we take into account their role in the field of medicine and industry, for example.

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