XR/MR/VR/AR: 5 Concepts you need to know about the Real-Virtual world
The term Extended reality (XR) is still not fancy linguistically. This blog will establish concepts that you should know about various terms in the shift from physical to virtual world, for example, Augmented reality (AR), Virtual reality (VR), Mixed Reality (MR).
There is only one limit while employing AR or VR technologies which is our imagination. Have you ever wondered how accessible society will become in near future? If not, re-imagine the world around you which is thriving in nearly every field.
“Looking to the future, the next big step will be for the very concept of the ‘device’ to fade away” -Sundar Pichai
You might have crowded thoughts on these technological advancements happening in our vicinity. Don’t worry we are here to aid you through the enormous possibilities.
Virtual reality, augmented reality or mixed reality are probably the terms you're most familiar with at this point. Have you heard of extended reality? Let’s know each of them briefly to have a fair idea.
1. Extended reality (XR)
According to Wikipedia, Extended reality (XR) is a word that refers to any real-and-virtual integrated environments and human-machine interactions created by computer technology and wearables, where 'X' stands for any current or future spatial computing technology. It simply means every virtual-real interaction other than physical reality is Extended reality.
Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR), Mixed Reality (MR), and everything in between are all referred to as Extended Reality (XR). Although AR and VR provide a wide range of innovative experiences, XR is powered by the same underlying technologies. The terms augmented reality and virtual reality (AR/VR) are frequently used interchangeably but they are in actual very different technologies.
2. Virtual reality (VR)
Virtual reality is an idea where the reality around the users is being replaced through the computer-generated virtual world. As a result, there is no longer a real world view, only a virtual one. Let us understand the attributes composing VR.
It exercises self-governance as users are in control at all times. For instance, a VR headset when mounted on the head of the user, it’s been tracked in 3D space while using your hands or body parts and speech as inputs. It offers ingenious connections using controllers and gestures. VR provides a sense of presence. The experience of users depends solely on the number of senses a VR device can control. The Matrix movie is the best illustration of a VR controlling all five human senses. It primarily uses immersion techniques by stimulation of various senses with the help of audio, video, and other VR technologies.
3. Augmented Reality (AR)
On the other hand, augmented reality enriches the real physical world. The user can witness both the real and virtual worlds. They're as if they've combined. We call this a composite vision because it combines the actual and virtual worlds. It means both Visual and audio can be overlaid. The real world can still be visualized since AR acts in real-time. Virtual content can be overlaid over the actual world around us. It gives the sense of belonging to the same world. AR is recorded in 3D by aligning real and virtual entities. You must have used goofy fun filters on your Instagram or Snapchat? These are illustrations of AR technology.
4. Mixed reality (MR)
Now you guys would have a pretty good idea about the terminologies. Let’s talk about the term mixed reality which is quite popular these days and is highly debatable amongst research groups wherein Mixed reality and augmented reality is often used metonymically. MR is considered to be the greater version than augmented reality. It is the merging of physical and virtual space to nurture new environments and visualizations so that physical and digital entities co-exist and interact in real-time. It does not establish itself in the physical or virtual world but is a mixture of real and virtual reality. To know more about the linkages and differences amongst AR, VR, & MR read here at intel.
5. Reality-Virtuality Continuum
The reality-virtuality continuum consists of the physical & digital world at each end of the spectrum.
Image showing Extended Reality (XR), Augmented Reality (AR), Mixed Reality (MR) & Virtual Reality (VR)
Deloitte says, AR / VR devices are expected to be the default gateway for humans to access the spatial web, but the form factor will eventually be haptic wearables, IoT devices, sensors, robots, autonomous with AR glasses, or digital contact lenses. We can accomplish various unrealistic goals in different sectors with XR technologies. In order for Spatial Web to be widely adopted, the AR interface should be inexpensive and accepted socially worldwide.
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