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What is Augmented Reality (AR)?
Augmented Reality is a technology enriching the real world with digital information, media, or graphics overlaying in real time camera view of your smartphone or any other device. The word ‘Augment’ basically means to add or enhance something. So, in a layman manner, AR is when you look at the real world but its augmented with graphics in your view. The technology is providing itself as a very useful tool in our everyday life. From social media filters to surgical purposes to sports broadcasting, AR is rapidly growing popularity because it brings elements of virtual world into our real world, thus enhancing the things we see, hear and feel.
How often do you encounter Augmented Reality (AR) on a daily basis?
It may be a lot more common than you think. AR simply makes use of existing environment you are in and adds a layer of information on top of it. If you’re not familiar with the way AR is being used in the mainstream market today, you may be surprised by the five examples that we’ve highlighted in the story below. 1. Interactive Gaming. When it comes to AR usage for gaming, Pokémon Go app takes the gold. The app uses your GPS data to determine where you are and reveal the virtual characters within your real world. 2. Data-Driven Sports Broadcasting. These days, there is no shortage of AR when it comes to live action sports. These were some of the first applications of AR praised by consumers. The goal behind AR in sports broadcasting was to increase viewership by providing additional information during a game. It’s just another way to visualize the trajectories of a ball, puck, or a player with the help of lines and curves. 3. Authorization. The quickest and most common way iPhone X (or newer) users use AR today is by unlocking their phone with their faces. Long gone are the days of using a thumbprint or pushing a button to unlock your phone.
How AR Technology Works?
AR often uses SLAM (Simultaneous localization and mapping) : A computer vision algorithm that compares visual features between camera frames in order to map and track the environment. In combination with sensor data from smartphone gyroscope and accelerometer, it is possible to achieve very reliable tracking. Companies like Apple, Google and 6D.ai are restlessly working to improve these algorithms. You can think of AR Apps as a set of technology layers. At the core, AR frameworks like ARKit and ARCore implement the computer vision algorithms to do tracking and mapping. If you use Unity3D, AR foundation provides a unified API spanning across several AR frameworks.
How is Virtual Reality (VR) different from Augmented Reality (AR)?
Virtual Reality is basically when a person is totally submerged into a completely different reality than the one they are currently living in. Whereas Augmented Reality shows you an altered version of your own reality on your phone screen/smart glasses and still be in your present reality, with VR, you would be wearing a headset that would cover your entire field of view thus you wouldn’t see anything going on in your actual setting. For AR all you would need to do is superimpose images, but for VR you have to create a whole new setting either from scratch or based on a pre-existing setting.
Where is AR going to be in the next 5–10 years?r> Augmented Reality has applications on almost every field; from healthcare to real estate there is room to implement AR. It can be used with patients to display their anatomy, or doctors can use it to have guides during surgeries that require immense accuracy. Experts claim that by 2025 the AR/VR industry will be worth over $25 Billion and steadily rising. So if you want to invest in something that won’t go from $19,000 to $6000 in 5 months; investing in AR/VR might be a good call.