When conversations about future technology come up, Augmented Reality always comes in the mix. This is because it is, no doubt, the next big thing. It is not the most common futuristic technology but it is gradually gaining ground. It places intangible objects alongside real ones. Gadgets like headsets, mobile devices, cameras, sensors and specially crafted app bring the entire technology to life.
Augmented Reality is not the same as Virtual Reality. Artificial technology takes a dive into an imaginary world and integrates virtual elements with real entities. However, Virtual Reality offers a simulation of the entire experience.
How it began
The term Augmented Reality was first used in 1990. It was when engineers at Boeing plants used augmented reality headsets to visualise wiring messages. The outcome has so far been revolutionary. The technology has now evolved into a more sophisticated and affordable technology.
The introduction of Google Glass in 2013 brought Augmented Reality into the mainstream. However, the project had some lapses. It proved that the technology could be a product available to the public. The success of Microsoft’s HoloLens in 2016 introduced an advanced version of the glasses.
These days, an average smartphone supports the Augmented Reality apps. Google’s ARCore, Apple’s ARKit and Samsung’s AR Emoji are just a few ways to show its incorporation in our phones.
How it works
The technology works by identifying markers or discovering the geographic location of the device. With geographic location, the marker can be any real-world entity that the software can recognise based on predefined characteristics. A sensor that scans the object using the AR app will then overlay the surroundings with a digital 3D image on the screen.
The geolocation-based technique means that Augmented Reality experiences can be built regardless of the place. It uses GPS modules and in-built sensors to determine the whereabouts and orientation accurately. The application can then generate appropriate data and embed it in the scene.
The usefulness of Augment Reality is beyond gaming and entertainment. It is useful in other sectors like tourism, education, healthcare, advertising, retail and even real estate. The list is endless, and the technology is improving daily. The technology also helped businesses do better with customer experience.
The technology is expected to grow to $198 billion by 2025. This would be an impressive leap from $11.14 billion in 2018.