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  • Pranav Nandurkar

Do you know: What is Augmented Reality?

Updated: Jan 31

Have you ever thought of the Snapchat lenses what we use for capturing some funny pics, games like PokemonGo in which players locate and capture the pokemon which pop-up in the real world standing next to you? How's this possible?  Doesn't it fascinate us that virtual characters, lenses, routes are seen in the real world but which doesn't exist in the real world? What is behind it? Yes, its due AR - augmented reality.

AR let us see the real-life environment right in front of us—trees swaying in the park, dogs chasing balls, kids playing soccer—with a digital augmentation overlaid on it.


Augmented reality is a technology which let us experience the real-world environment through computer-generated information which includes visuals along with the audio. It is an accurate 3D registration of virtual and real objects. It is a halfway simulation of the real world but the only difference it is simulated in the real world by some computer-generated information in which virtual reality completely replaces the user's real-world environment with a simulated one. Augmented reality is used to enhance natural environments or situations and offers a precise and enriched experience. The information about the surrounding real world of the user becomes interactive and digitally manipulated with the use of AR technologies.

Some of the examples of AR in our everyday lives are - -Military fighter pilots see an AR projection of their altitude, speed, and other data on their helmet visor, which means they don’t need to waste focus by glancing down to see them. -During football games, broadcasters use AR to draw lines on the field to illustrate and analyze plays.


Confused between AR and VR? Simple differences which separate AR and VR:- Virtual Reality - It takes u to the virtual environment .and simulates a user's physical presence in a virtual environment. It takes you to somewhere else where a virtual world exists, wherein the real-world shuts up.  Example - VR devices such as HTC Vive, Oculus Rift or Google Cardboard, 

Augmented Reality - It adds the information to the real environment projecting the information in what you are already seeing. It creates an environment which makes the user feel that he is in the real world and those things exist in the real world. Example – Video games and smartphones indulged with AR technology, Apps which gives an experience of trying objects being at home.


Applications of AR – Applications of AR can be seen in various fields some of them are:-

Medical Training- From operating MRI equipment to performing complex surgeries, AR tech holds the potential to boost the depth and effectiveness of medical training in many areas. Design & Modeling- From interior design to architecture and construction, AR is helping professionals visualize their final products during the creative process. Use of headsets enables architects, engineers, and design professionals to step directly into the buildings and spaces to see how their designs might look, and even make virtual on the spot changes. Classroom Education- While technology like tablets has become widespread in many schools and classrooms, teachers and educators are now ramping up student's learning experience with AR.


Some real-life examples of AR are - AR GPS Compass Map 3D: The app shows a 3D compass that gets fused with the camera image and shows your current location from GPS on a separate map with adjustable size. The app can only run on Android interface. The compass uses a very effective amalgamation and filtering algorithm to combine the values of the magnetic field sensor, the accelerometer, and the gyroscope to get the maximum accuracy and stability which is a different feature as compared to other apps. Disney colouring book: A few years ago, Disney created a unique way for children to see their favourite characters in 3D using augmented reality. The research team developed a technology using AR that would project coloured images from a colouring book into 3D renderings using a mobile phone or tablet. This technology is still in its infancy and has not yet been released to the public, but this could usher in a whole new way for children to explore and play with their imagination.

Gucci – ‘try on’ shoes in AR: One of the main reasons retail brands have invested in AR technology is to help customers make better and more informed product decisions. Gucci is the latest luxury brand to do so, adding an AR feature to its app to let users ‘try on’ sneakers. Pointing their smartphone camera downwards, users can choose to see a digital overlay of 19 different sneakers on their own feet, swiping left or right to change to a different pair. The app also allows users to take photos, which can then be shared on social media or in messaging apps.


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