Virtual reality uses a headset as the primary hardware to render digital images. These headsets contain a screen and two lenses (one for each eye). These lenses are slightly tilted and adjust according to the eye to give the image a 3d effect. Along with this, there are other elements like GPU, eye and head tracking etc. that complete the VR experience.
Read More: A handbook on how virtual reality works
Augmented Reality vs Virtual reality: The Difference between AR and VR
Here are some key differences between AR and VR, these will help you better understand them individually:
- Augmented reality is a combination of the real world objects and computer-generated visuals hence the user does not experiences total immersive experience. On the other hand, VR takes a person to a simulated environment hence it creates a truly immersive experience.
- Augmented reality is currently much easier to access as compared to virtual reality as it does require any external hardware. To obtain a VR experience we need a headset that involves investment while AR can be experienced just from a smartphone.
- Both these technologies can be delivered using a headset. In case of augmented reality, the screen of the headset needs to be transparent like in Microsoft HoloLens or Google Glasses while for virtual reality the screen needs to be opaque like that in Google Cardboard or Oculus Rift.
A Note about Mixed Reality and 360 Degree View:
Mixed reality is quite similar to augmented reality as it allows us to interact with virtual objects in the real-world environment. While you might find many people defending them as different techs (which they somewhat are) it is safe to say that can be used interchangeably. Both are very similar and in future, they will merge. Long story short, no need to bother about it.
360-degree view is a camera recorded view of a place in a 360-degree graphic. If this view is presented via a VR headset then it can be called virtual reality. On the other hand, if you see it on your mobile as an image then that won’t be classified as AR or VR.
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Though people constantly debate on the scope and potential of these tech we would like to remain neutral here. Both these technologies are very compelling and have distinct uses and advantages. We would say that they would both evolve and hence aren’t competing but complementing technology.
If you have an AR or VR related project then feel free to contact us. With over 10 years of experience in the mobile technologies, we have developed deep expertise in this domain. Contact us today for a consultation or POC.