Summary of the Context
What is AR, VR, MR, and XR?
What is AR (Augmented Reality)?
What is VR (Virtual Reality)?
What is MR (Mixed Reality)?
In the year 1968, Ivan Sutherland an American computer scientist and his student Bob Sproull has created a VR / AR head-mounted display (Sword of Damocles) at Harvard that was connected to a computer.
But it was until 2012 when Oculus announced their commercially viable AR/VR headset and made the technology in limelight again.
What is AR, VR, MR, and XR?
AR (Augmented Reality), VR (Virtual Reality), MR (Mixed Reality), and XR (Extended Reality) are the emerging technologies that change the human view of seeing the world around them. It can basically a computed generated overview of the real world.
In AR (Augmented Reality), a computer-generated image is superimposed onto the real world and provides some details about the real world. Pokémon Go is the most famous AR-based game.
On the other hand, VR (Virtual Reality) is a fully virtual world created either using software or can be a video world. Here the whole environment is virtually created and can be experienced on a VR headset.
Mixed Reality or MR is similar to AR but the key difference in the fact that in MR the virtual content can interact with the real-world entity in real-time while in AR is does not.
XR (Extended Reality) is an immerging field and has the potential to completely change how we interact with the virtual and real world. It is an umbrella term that incorporates all the three technologies AR, VR, and MR.
What is AR (Augmented Reality)?
Augmented Reality is the rendering of the digital image on to real-world objects. AR is the concept where a computer-generated image is artificially imposed on to the real-world entity and can superficially interact with the real-world object but not in real-time.
Augmented Reality can be experienced on a mobile application or through wearable AR glasses made especially for this purpose. Most of the functions of Jarvis which we have in Iron Man Story is based on Augmented Reality and Mixed Reality.
AR is mostly used in enhancing the user’s experience as it limit’s the functionality of the application but it is less restrictive than VR as it involves some real-world environment.
It has the potential for mass consumption as compared to virtual and mixed reality. International Data Corporation (IDC) has predicted that the spending on AR and VR technology will be $160 billion by 2023 increasing almost 10x from 2019’s prediction of $16.8 billion.
Some AR Products:
With the use of applications (apps) and the better accessibility of the internet to everyone using AR has become very easy. Common examples are Pokémon Go and Ikea Place which are based on AR.
It overlays the information on top of the product and can display price, color, cloth, and many details in the application itself. Now you will think but how it will do that as there are many shops which may have that same product but the different price, So the answer is pretty straight forward as this application uses location tracking with advanced image processing algorithms in the background.
Smart Glasses (AR Glasses)
AR glasses have an inbuilt display onto which it shows all the details to the user who is wearing that device.
AR device less processing power than VR as it doesn’t have to render a completely virtual environment and is mostly targeted for enterprise-level customers.
These devices are expensive than VR headset as to put the amount of tech onto a small wearable device and can range somewhere between $1000 to $10000.
What is Virtual Reality (VR)?
Virtual Reality (VR) through the use of head-mounted devices provides a completely virtual view that can be built through digital images, real-world content.
Users hear artificial sounds and sights with VR and feel as if they are in a digital environment. Imagine opening your eyes and seeing a computer-generated world all around you; you can move in, and even communicate with, this place. This is about virtual reality experiencing a virtual world.
Some VR products:
Oculus Rift and Oculus Go
The Oculus Rift was the first big name in VR’s new era and Oculus remains a major player. The Rift S has a higher resolution than the Vive (but not as high as the Vive Pro or, strangely enough, the Oculus Quest) and newer and lighter Oculus Touch motion controllers, and does not need external sensors to operate.
The Oculus Go is the least expensive way of moving into virtual reality. It’s more affordable than mobile VR headsets at $200, but you don’t need a compatible (and typically costly flagship) smartphone to use it, unlike those headsets. The $200 investment takes you straight into a virtual reality environment close to that of Gear VR, complete with an intuitive controller.
Google daydream is priced at $100 which makes it’s a great option for new players. But the quality offered is not good and has compatibility issues. It works with only Google pixels and Samsung Galaxy phones. Still, at this price, it’s highly competitive to Oculus products and Google is making new developments in its product line every day.
What is Mixed Reality (MR)?
The real-world and digital objects interact in a Mixed Reality (MR) experience, which combines elements of both AR and VR. Mixed reality technology is just starting to take off with one of the most notable early mixed reality apparatuses of Microsoft’s HoloLens.
Mixed reality helps interaction with the virtual world in real-time and helps to improve the experience of the user.
Acer Windows Mixed Reality AH101 headset is a much lighter, more colorful take on the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift. Vive is also an inexpensive option.
It’s a completely new field where all the three AR. VR and MR and other technologies that are still to be discovered are combined into a single application. XR for all immersive technologies is a new umbrella term. The ones we already have today — Augmented Reality ( AR), Virtual Reality ( VR), and Mixed Reality (MR) plus the ones to be created yet.
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