AUGMENTED REALITY (AR) By Areeba Rashid

What is Augmented Reality (AR)?

Augmented Reality turns the environment around you into a digital surface. Unlike virtual reality, which creates a totally artificial environment, augmented reality uses the existing environment and overlays new information on top of it.

Augmented can be used on al screens and devices, from mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets, to PC's and devices you can wear on your head such as glasses and lenses.

Impact

Augmented Reality will have a huge impact in the world in the near future.For example, Augmented Reality will impact urban exploration. AR may completely recreate how we navigate. Imagine seeing directions to a place or thing that you are looking for right before your eyes, without having to look for directions manually. This will help when you are driving and Augmented Reality will point you to the direction you are going, without you having to take your eyes off the road.

Be able to see directions right in front on you without having to take your eyes off the road.

Another way Augmented Reality will impact everyday life is through entertainment. We have already seen the impact of the augmented reality game Pokemon Go, which still holds the title for the largest rollout of augmented reality through mass consumption. However, as more innovations in augmented reality are being created, such AR Headsets,like Microsoft Hololens, Magic Leap, and Meta 2 , entertainment is about to be impacted by technology like never before, and these augmented reality games are turning our environment into digital interfaces

Pokemon GO, a popular Augmented Reality game

Something that will probably the most affected by augmented reality will be they way you shop. Innovation in retail is already increasing and product visualization is the next innovation to change the retail industry forever. For example, in-store augmented reality can display information and other visuals on packed items with an image scan. AR has been used to show what comes with a packaged product so customers know what to expect. Also, augmented reality can allow customers to try their products in front of them before buying them online.

Be able to see how a product looks like before purchasing it.

Pros and Cons of Augmented Reality

PROS

  • Redefine the mobile user experience for the next generation making mobile search invisible and reducing search efforts for users.
  • Can overall information on relevant tools.
  • Mobility (work constantly on the move to save time).
  • Supports hands free work.
  • Wearability (products such as Google Glass isn't heavy and is suitable for many environments).
  • Larger display.
  • Smart glasses such as the Google Glass provide visual alerts and reminders and environment awareness.
  • Make shopping easier than before.
  • Some other positive impacts of AR are in the sectors of medicine (direct training of students), military (precise location of enemy position), fine art (mixed media and interactive artworks), and teaching (visualize learning materials in interactive apps).

CONS

  • Internet connectivity (there are many places where connection isn't available).
  • Battery life of some of the products, which should be extended to allow users to make the most from the technology in daily use.
  • Mobile phones are not powerful enough to process lots of information.
  • Price of some of the products may need to be reduced to allow for mainstream use.
  • Privacy can be at risk because of all the data and information that a stranger could access using augmented reality.

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