Almost every one of us has watched 3D and 5D shows, and we all must have faced excitement, thrill, and fear when the fictional characters seemed to be real. That was just for 30-60 min. What if I tell you that there's a technology through which you can vanish the gap between Reality and fiction using your smartphone? This is exactly what augmented reality tries to achieve: merge the real-world environment with superimposed digital content. In this article, we will look at all the details about this concept.
What is Augmented Reality?
Augmented Reality, as the name suggests, refers to the enhancement of Reality with interactive digital content like pictures, sounds, texts, emojis, colors, directions, etc. With the advancement in technology, it is becoming a trending topic.
According to estimates, the AR technology business is so beneficial that it is expected to cross the $60 billion mark in the coming years. AR technology currently operating from smartphones is expected to switch to smart glasses and head-mounted displays in the coming future.Example:
There can be numerous examples of augmented Reality where our real-life environment gets mixed up with fictional and digital things. For example, a real-life dog can be shown like playing with a virtual character, or you can represent yourself as drinking a digital drink, etc.
Other real-life examples of augmented reality (AR) technology are:
- Snapchat, where you can pick many filters and lenses, and you can conveniently choose any of them and try on your face.
- Apps that allow you to check clothes, spectacles and other such common things without actually wearing them.
- Popular game PokemonGo, in which you Pokemon characters seem to pop up in your real-life surroundings.
Augmented V/s Virtual Reality
Augmented Reality is often confused with Virtual Reality. But there is a huge difference.
Virtual Reality: VR (or Virtual Reality) refers to a technology in which the users experience a virtual world created by a computer. Examples of Virtual Reality include Playstation VR that takes you into a virtual world.
AR: In augmented reality (AR), the user experiences a real-life environment that is enhanced with virtual filters.
So we can say that VR creates a computer-originated virtual reality while AR merges the virtual and original environment. A combination of the two can be instrumental in different applications.
Benefits of Augmented Reality
- Augmented Reality helps in bridging the gap between physical and virtual worlds. This can help us to accurately and correctly remember the information. For instance, if we see a 3d model of the heart, we are more likely to remember the details.
- Similarly, augmented reality makes learning and understanding easier by merging real life and digital information.
- Besides this, it makes visualization easier. Using AR, you can magnify the 2-d image and get a better visual.
- An on-site visual AR guide can help us in formulating better and quicker decisions.
- Better interaction: AR can promote a better interaction between digital and real-life objects. For instance, furniture companies use this technology to show how furniture would look like in the home. This, in turn, creates a better interaction between the product and buyer.
AR in Real Life Problems
Augmented Reality has many uses in various fields. The prominent ones include:
- Navigation systems Augmented Reality can make navigation easier since it allows you to superimpose a virtual map on real roads. Using this, you can easily understand the way to your destination. This, in turn, reduces the need of carrying a map, which often diverted the driver's attention from the road. But using AR, he/she can get a navigation image on the road.
- Medical Purposes Using AR, doctors and medical professionals can make a 3-d image of the brain and other body parts. This helps them to explain to students in a better way besides assisting them in surgeries.
A prominent medical company, 'Acuvien' uses AR technology better to understand veins' location in the human body. This helps medical professionals to draw blood and administer injections efficiently.
- Military Use AR technology is also used by military personnel to better view their altitude and position. In this way, it can save their time. Also, it can be used to see the 3-d models of fighter planes and understand their functioning better.
The US army had used this technology to train soldiers through fictional situations. Based on Augmented Reality, the US army has come up with TAR (Tactical Augmented Reality) that helps the soldiers to estimate the target distance along with other benefits.
It is even used in Navy aircraft carriers for inspection, which was earlier a difficult task. The inspector had to match the details first with paper and then look at the ship. But owing to this technology, they can see the design on the ship only, which saves time and effort.
- Reviewing the history Some historical monuments have this technology to give a better experience to visitors. Using this technology, the tourist guides ought to explain the rich civilization and history associated with the ruined historical sites. The most common use of this technology for historical reasons is found in Italy.
- Airports The Singapore Airport authorities have efficiently exhausted this technology. They use AR for looking into the cargo containers without actually uploading them.
- Sports The use of AR in sports is done for the practice of players. Through this technology, fictional opponents and obstacles are created, and the players have to dodge them. This shows their preparation level even without actually playing.
- Better Staff Training AR technology can be used to give better training to staff. Since in-person training is not always viable, companies use holograms for better staff training. A practical example of AR being used to enhance labor productivity is in Boeing.
The company uses AR for personnel training and has recorded better efficiency. Even less experienced staff was able to grasp most of the concepts from AR training.
So, this was all about the latest technology AR. Augmented Reality (or AR) enhances the real world through digital visuals. Owing to its benefits in numerous fields, its popularity is increasing. It is expected to become a new normal in the coming future owing to its innumerable benefits.