Have you ever watched a football game and seen a yellow line on the ground? If you have, you’ve seen one of the first examples of augmented reality in action. A more modern example of AR is Pokémon Go. The hugely popular game took America by storm in the summer of 2016, and augmented reality became a topic on almost every news station. Pokémon virtual creatures appeared on phones as if they were there in the real world and 380 million users chased after them, making it the most used mobile game in history. Then in 2017, AR headsets became hugely popular. Today, Silicon Valley executives are promoting AR as the next big tech game changer. Augmented reality has a practical application in almost every industry, and is set to change everything from customer service and employee training to shopping.
AR and shopping
Augmented reality shopping apps can help consumers avoid buyer’s remorse. It can be used to test if a lipstick shade looks just right with your skin shade, or if that couch looks like a fit in your living room. The cosmetic giant Sephora launched it’s Virtual Artist app in March of last year, where makeup is superimposed on your face. Ikea also launched their virtual app in September of 2017. The furniture is 3D and true to scale, so your furniture is the perfect size and style for your home.
AR and the workplace
AR allows for employees to safely train on essential skills without putting the business or customer at risk. It could range from a surgeon practicing a complex procedure to a coffee shop employee training on how to use the equipment. This will only become more and more common as prices are driven down.
So what’s the difference between Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality?
Virtual Reality is immersive, while augmented reality augments what you are already seeing. AR and VR are often confused, because they are so closely related. The thing they have in common is their ability to alter our perception of our world. Where they differ is the ability to decipher our current real-world surroundings. The two are so closely related, some believe the terms themselves are obsolete. Alex Kipman, technical fellow for the operating group at Microsoft, said in a keynote speech that “These are not separate concepts. These are just labels for different points on the mixed reality continuum.”
Is mixed reality the future?
Virtual reality recreates everything you see, and augmented reality can place images into your current environment. Mixed reality takes it a step further by adding the images into the real world while still being aware of you and the world around you. Mixed reality has the ability to “place” the virtual objects in the real world, which makes it possible to interactive with both real and virtual objects at the same time, creating a seamless experience.
If you are a business owner, it may be time to consider how you can take advantage of the advancements in augmented reality and virtual reality. It’s now becoming possible to reach consumers in ways that we never were before.
If your business is an innovator in augmented reality or virtual reality technologies and would like your story featured on Modern Business, contact us at www.modernbusinesstv.com for consideration.