How Augmented Reality Varies

Whether you’re into technology or against it, augmented reality is a special one to consider. While we have all heard about virtual reality and its benefits, you may not have seen as much with augmented reality. And truly, we need augmented reality just as much if not more than virtual reality! And here’s why it’s different than virtual reality.

With virtual reality or VR for short, we have an enclosed area that is limited by how cameras there are or range. It creates a world to immerse us in and that’s great but not in the same way. Augmented reality, or AR for short is something that works in our existing world. This makes the difference pretty significant!

Why Augmented Reality Matters

Unlike with VR, AR allows us flexibility. The device doesn’t have to produce a completely immersive world to interact with, because it uses our own. It takes the data of our existing surroundings and solves a problem we have.

Now you might be asking what that problem is, but that depends. You can solve a variety of problems that require solutions and AR allows you to do that. Because AR devices don’t always require high performing hardware we can use technology as small as your day to day glasses!

The reason we need augmented reality is because the world is constantly changing. We need something flexible that provides solutions to everyday problems that are becoming ever more complex.

With that being said, there are several industries that can benefit or are already using the technology!

AR Benefits the Medical Field

There are a lot of different use cases and scenarios where AR can help us. The medical field is one area in particular that can benefit with displaying medical information. Surgeons can use it, nurses can use it and just about anyone else who needs a little help!

AR isn’t restricted to glasses or headsets either. We also see it being used with nurses to find veins in patients. Drawing blood may seem like an easy task but when a vein is missed the nurse has to then poke a second time to find a vein. While augmented reality is used in a simplistic way here, the potential for other uses are endless.

What if AR could be used for a heads up display during surgery? This would allow a surgeon to see the patients vitals and other details live while performing a procedure. While this is still being experimented with, it’ll likely be a future tool of the operating room.

Overall, the medical field is growing constantly with technology and AR can help it! But the medical field isn’t the only area that can benefit.

Existing Industries That Currently Benefit

Surprisingly, there are already several businesses and professions that benefit from AR. Some are earlier in development than others but it’s worth taking a look at them still!

In fact, some companies are pushing innovation to the next level with their AR solutions. Atheerair is a company that is creating personalized solutions dependent on the needs of their clients. Here are some of the industries they provide AR solutions for…

This company alone creates solutions for all of those industries and many more! But they aren’t the only ones out there striving to create working solutions. Companies like Subvrsive, Red Realities and AMPLEXOR are all working on their own projects as well.

These are the companies and technologies that help to create a future around AR. We need augmented reality more than we know and the support of it is proof! Now let’s take a look at how the average consumer could benefit.

Can The Average Consumer Benefit?

If you’re not a business and someone who is an enthusiast, can you benefit? Should you buy a device that uses AR? These are some of the questions you might be asking yourself.

Well, as it turns out the answer is yes and no to all of them. AR as we more commonly know it to be, is a headset, smartphone or another device we look through. You can use it on your smartphone for some fun uses but that’s just about it.

But first we’ll look at the headset. Should you buy a pair of those glasses? If you are an average consumer the answer is probably no. Microsoft offers the Hololens which has a lot of great features but it’s not really needed unless you’re a business. The benefits of buying an AR device doesn’t quite justify the cost as an average consumer. Sure, you could probably watch movies on it but some of those devices cost an upwards of $1,000 or more!

Now, looking at when you use it on your smartphone it’s probably a simple app. Popular games have used AR but that has carried its own controversy … In this case you should definitely give it a try! If you already own a smartphone then it’s likely that you’ll only be paying for an app. This will give you a small slice of the experience of using AR. It’ll definitely help you to understand it and its benefits!

Now, I mentioned controversy above and that brings us to the final question…

Is Augmented Reality a Distraction?

Because AR games have shown to distract us, is it always a distraction? Are work applications a risk? I believe the answer to this is also yes and no at a first glance.

When you’re playing a game it’s very different than using AR for your job. They are two completely different use cases and one actually requires you to focus on your work with the app. Because AR is useless without the proper software it’s difficult to blame the device itself.

Whether it’s a distraction or not should rely completely on the software developers and the scenario that it’s being used in. So in short answer, no it’s not a distraction when done properly and for work. Games are an entirely different situation though and that varies on the individual.

We Need Augmented Reality

Augmented reality is an amazing technology. The possibilities are endless and it seems to be the direction that the world is taking. For better or for worse, AR is here to stay. And just because we don’t always hear about it in the news doesn’t mean it isn’t growing!

But what do you think? Are you excited or worried to have AR in the workplace or even at home? Let me know below!