Have you ever wanted to see what an object looks like or how a tunnel might look in real life? Now you can with the help of Augmented Reality.
There are many mixed feelings about this technology because it’s not well known and the application has been limited so far. However, there is great potential for utilizing AR applications which could benefit our community in various ways.
In this blog post, we’ll explore some of these benefits and why Augmented Reality is becoming one of the most popular tools for learning.
What Is Augmented Reality
83.1 million US citizens will be using AR on a monthly basis in 2020. Augmented Reality is a form of computer-generated information which superimposes images, sounds, and even smells onto the real world.
It’s similar to the concept of the Virtual Reality where the user sees and interacts with virtual environments. However, there are some key differences:
Virtuality experiences are typically created using specialized tools, are only available in software form and they can only be experienced by using special equipment like headsets or goggles.
Augmented reality is different because it adds to our existing knowledge rather than replacing it. When you see a number 2 in front of your eyes, for example, you know that it is not actually a two but an image that you’re seeing on screen.
A great example of this is the popular Pokemon Go game. It utilizes AR to help users find and catch virtual monsters which are then stored in your camera roll on their phones.
Many have used this game to explore their immediate surroundings and discover the places they live, thus improving the awareness of their places and creating more awareness for those places as well.
Benefits Of Augmented Reality
As virtual reality and augmented reality technology continue to develop, mobile devices are becoming increasingly capable of blurring the line between the digital and physical worlds. AR smart glasses are one example of this, allowing users to overlay digital information and images onto the real world around them.
This technology has a wide range of potential applications, from gaming and entertainment to education and business. By 2024, it is predicted that the augmented reality market would reach $50 billion.
The Harvard Business Review has long been a respected voice when it comes to business and management advice. In recent years, the HBR has increasingly turned its attention to the ways that the real and digital worlds are colliding and how businesses need to adapt to survive and thrive in this new landscape.
The HBR has been at the forefront of exploring how augmented reality experiences are blurring the lines between the physical and virtual world and how businesses need to be prepared to operate in this new reality.
1. Creates More Awareness
AR can be used in various ways to create more awareness of the places where we live and work. For example, one of the most interesting uses is in outdoor mapping. When you are in a new city, it can be difficult to navigate your way around.
This is where AR comes in handy because it allows users to see what their destination looks like before they even get there which improves the chances of reaching their destination on time and safe.
2. It’s An Instructive Tool For Children
Virtual reality has been extremely useful for children with special education needs who struggle with social interactions and other difficulties. AR can also be used to help those with autism and other learning disabilities.
For example, a child who is afraid of heights or a fish tank can use AR and see how things look in 3D. This helps them overcome their fears and eventually learn to deal with similar situations in real life.
3. It’s Great For Visual Learning
70% of customers think augmented reality can be useful for developing new skills. Using AR, you can add images onto any surface which makes it easier for people to understand the content because it’s more visual than just reading about it.
For example, you could use this technology to check out a new piece of furniture and see how you’d feel if you move in that room.
4. Training And Skills Development
AR can be used to train employees on new equipment or just to build their confidence. For example you can create a miniature city on the table and let an employee figure out how it works and then talk about his findings with his colleagues. This way he can feel more confident when touring the real deal later on.
5. Creates A More Realistic Experience For Patients
Augmented reality applications have been successfully used to help people with claustrophobia, height fear, water phobia, fear of spiders etc. All they need is a thing that triggers those fears and then feed them with the appropriate images which helps them overcome those fears quicker than any other treatment so far.
6. Good For Educators And Institutions
$12 billion was spent worldwide on VR/AR gaming in 2020. AR applications are a good way to improve classroom learning by combining it with the VR technology which is a better way to learn about various topics.
Instead of just using the traditional methods of teaching, AR can be used between the teacher and the student or teacher and guest to create an interactive experience where students learn from each other.
7. Can Be Used For Long Term Training
Diet coaches or sports trainers can use AR to display foreign languages in different places so that their clients can see how those words would look like in real life as well as how they sound when spoken. It’s a great way to improve foreign language skills without having to move from the comfort of their own homes.
8. It’s A Benchmarking Tool For Businesses
AR can be used to measure certain things in real life which otherwise might be difficult to check out without breaching regulations and privacy.
For example, you could create an AR application that lets you turn on/off the lights on your desk and see how much light there is in your office before turning them off, or measure items like fire extinguishers, storage space and other areas that need to be measured but may not normally be easy to access.
9. It’s A Useful Tool For Architects
AR helps architects from the start because it allows them to visualize how their designs will look in real life and what materials would be used for the construction. This helps them determine how much time and effort they are going to have to put into designing those spaces and later on, when they build them, it won’t be too time-consuming or difficult.
10. It’s Used For Educational Purposes
An expert on a particular subject can help a classroom of students by using AR. They can use this technology to create a fun and interactive learning environment which can be used at home as well.
For example, let’s say it’s the first time that you will be going camping with the family and you want to know more about how to navigate in the woods at night. You could use AR to show how your headlamps work and what they do like a flashlight or torch.
It makes it more interesting and engaging which helps everyone understand much better the topics they’re learning about.
Risks Of Augmented Reality
There are many AR apps available that can enhance your everyday life. From AR app that can provide information about your surroundings to ones that can help you find your way around, there is an app for almost everything.
You can even find apps that will AR display your current location on an AR map. Only 1% of retailers employed AR or VR to improve shopping in 2020.
There is a new trend in software development that is starting to gain traction, and that is the incorporation of AR feature into applications. This is made possible by the increasing amount of digital data that is becoming available, as well as the development of AR software that allows users to interact with this data in a more natural way.
There are already a number of AR applications that are being used in a variety of different industries, and it is likely that this trend will continue to grow in the future.
1. It Depends On A Lot Of Factors
It is important to understand that AR can have a great effect on your life and improve it in many ways, but at the same time it also has some risks that you need to be aware of as well.
For example, because VR/AR is still in its infancy, creating these applications may pose a risk of invasion of privacy and causing physical damage to your eye sight. Some studies suggest that using these applications day by day can cause permanent damage to your vision.
2. It’s A Privacy Risk
Augmented reality creates an opportunity to get deeper into people’s lives. This creates a privacy risk because the information obtained using this technology can be used in ways that were not originally intended, therefore it is important to be aware of that part and how your information is being used when applying augmented reality in various businesses.
3. It Can Cause Physical Damage To Your Eye Sight
As mentioned before, using augmented reality for prolonged periods of time can cause permanent damage to your vision, therefore you need to take regular breaks from these applications and use them for short periods only which should help you keep your eyesight as perfect as possible until there are better solutions to this problem.
4. The Content Is Not Monitored Properly
The first AR ad for BMW’s MINI marketing debuted in 2008. There is a possibility that the content that you’re seeing when using augmented reality could be illegal, therefore it’s important to be aware of how you can control and monitor this content to ensure the safety of your eye sight.
After all, that’s the main reason why you might want to use augmented reality in the first place – because it can make your life better. If something really bad is going on then you need to know about it and be able to take action as soon as possible.
5. It Can Cause People Physical Or Mental Harm
Just like any other technology, augmented reality also has a potential for causing harm. It’s not something that you should use on children as they are still developing and haven’t developed their eye sight yet, so they might be exposed to a lot of problems. There might also be some privacy issues with AR, therefore you need to know what information is being shared and used.
6. It’s A Security Risk
There is a possibility that criminals will use augmented reality to try and break into people’s homes through their windows or doors pretending to be an employee who needs access at the moment.
This is mostly possible when using Windows 8 or higher which comes with Kinect as its built-in camera. This can be used to obtain your credentials or bypass any security measures that you have in place.
7. There Is A Possibility Of Abuse By Hackers
Augmented reality could be abused by hackers because it’s a relatively new technology that is still evolving.
Because of that, there is a chance that you can experience some sort of information leakage which will compromise your privacy, therefore it’s important to make sure that when using these applications you secure them with security login requirements and use other extra layers to keep the hackers out of your system.
8. The Content Is Not Monitored Properly
If you’re connected to the internet, there’s a possibility that your information will be monitored by hackers. Hackers have already been known to pose as Facebook employees when trying to get into people’s accounts which is a huge security violation.
Even though you might only be talking with one person over Skype, there is a possibility that it could end up on the radar of hackers.
9. It Can Cause People Physical Or Mental Harm
When using augmented reality, you’re exposing your mental and physical state to other people. It is important to be aware that there is a possibility of identity theft and financial fraud because they can obtain valuable information about you which they can use against you at a later date.
10. It Creates An Opportunity For Hackers To Get Deeper Into Our Lives
We’ve already mentioned that you need to be aware of the privacy risks associated with using AR but it goes much deeper than that. Not only can hackers obtain your personal information, but they can also use it against you.
In the future, it’s very likely that our smartphones will be more ‘augmented’ than ever with these great technologies such as AR/VR.
One of the industries with an enormous amount of potential is advertising. Marketing in the future will be both more targeted and personalized through AR applications. Doing so will allow a brand or business to make informed decisions on how to increase revenue.
Furthermore, they’ll be able to track their target markets through digital billboards and adverts using AR technology.