The rapid development in technology in recent years has brought people closer to what digital devices can offer in our imagination: turning everything into digital their digital versions, including reality. Thanks to that, now there are two technological inventions that can make that happens. Those inventions are called Virtual Reality, which is often abbreviated as VR, and Augmented Reality, which is often abbreviated as AR.
What is virtual and augmented reality?
Since ancient times, people usually give name to their inventions based on what those inventions do or represent. It is the same with virtual reality and augmented reality. As their names suggest, they both have something to do with creating a new reality. However, the differences in their names, which are the noun adjectives in their names that both explain the same noun: reality, indicate that although both inventions have something to do with creating a new reality, they surely have different methods in the processes.
To put it simple, virtual reality is a technology where a VR device creates a new reality from scratch and brings the device user to the reality while almost cutting him/her from the real world. On the other hand, augmented reality is a technology where an AR device, which can be in the form of our regular smartphones, creates a new reality from materials taken from the real world, which are usually taken using a phone camera.
However, AR is not like VR, which almost cuts the user from the real world due to the use of a pair of headsets and the VR device itself that completely blocks the user’s vision, because AR does not require the user to put a pair of headsets and the device, which is usually a smartphone or tablet, does not completely blocks the user’s vision at all.
Download Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) PowerPoint Presentation:
Why VR is better than AR?
Based on the explanation above, it can be said that virtual reality creates a completely different reality for the user while augmented reality only does half of the job or even less. So, it is safe to assume that VR is much better than AR in terms of creating a new reality and bringing the user to it.
However, if the user does not want to really separate him/herself from the real world due to certain reasons, then AR is the more suitable option for him/her. So, the decision to use VR or AR depends on the interests and needs of the user, but still, in terms of technology, VR is absolutely better than AR.
What is the future of AR and VR?
If we talk about the potentials of augmented reality and virtual reality in the future, it can be said that both technologies have promising futures. Slowly but surely, both technologies have become more and more common in our daily life, especially AR because AR uses devices like our regular smartphones. It is just like how smartphones were first introduced to the public.
Smartphones were quite expensive, sophisticated, and considered to be far superior compared to feature phones back then. However, now smartphones have become quite common in our society and can be bought starting from a very affordable price.
What are some applications of AR and VR?
Every time a new technology appears, it has to have its application in real life. In fact, most of new technologies appear due to problems that demand solutions from the new technologies. Both augmented reality and virtual reality appear due to the demands of making a digital reality for many purposes. So, it should not be too hard to find the applications of AR and VR in real life.
Even, many people may not notice that the features in their smartphones that they use every day are categorized as AR. One of the applications of AR that we can find in our daily life is photo or video filter. By using photo or video filters, we have altered or augmented the reality that has been take by our smartphone camera, so that the result of the filtered photo or video deserves to be called an AR. Such filters are now quite common in our society because anyone who accesses social media can use the filters.
Of course, that is not the only application of AR and VR. There are many other significant applications of AR and VR besides photo or video filters. Those applications include the applications in video games, medical exams, engineering, such as simulation of a building construction, project explanation, and so on.
Virtual reality and augmented reality in education
Many people may still think that both augmented reality and virtual reality are only for gaming needs due to the many uses of the technologies in that field. However, in fact, AR and VR have been widely used in education. There are several examples of the uses of the technologies in education, such as the use of AR technology in a microbiology class to see and explain the physical forms of cells and other parts of organisms.
This is quite helpful because if we just use a microscope to observe cells, then we can only see the cells that are being observed and we have to go through the trouble of taking the cells and setting the microscope every time we want to observe them.
Meanwhile, if we use AR technology in the microbiology class, we can see the cells that are being explained in more details in 3D. Not only that, we can also see many kinds of cells from various organisms and we do not have to go through the trouble of preparing the cells and microscope for that.
As for virtual reality, it can even give a better vision to students than what augmented reality can give regarding the materials being studied. However, it seems that only high-budget schools or colleges that have applied VR in education due to the relatively expensive price of a VR device.
That is only one example of VR and AR in education, so that there are many other examples out there, such as the use in explaining our solar system in an astronomy class, the use in explaining atoms in chemistry class, and so on.
What is Google’s AR and VR?
As one of the leading companies in technology, Google has launched its new product called Google’s AR and VR. As explained above, augmented reality and virtual reality create new reality to help and ease our life with their implementation. So, Google uses the new technologies to help bridge digital world and physical world.
Google AR and VR utilizes the camera of the user’s smartphone and provide the user with information he/she needs, such as the name of the street, navigation, simulation, and so on. So, by using Google’s AR and VR, its user will be able to obtain information that can be very helpful for him/her.