It may sound like a brave new world, but the application of augmented and virtual reality (AR and VR) technology is already all around you, even if you’re not aware of it. Enhancements to access security, which is important for the online casino environment, on your TV screens during sports matches, in your work meetings, and in so many more ways than you might imagine. But tech developers are doing more than imagining; they’re creating apps, games, scenarios, and so much more where the use of AR and VR plays an intrinsic role.
What Are AR and VR?
The answer to what is augmented reality and virtual reality and the difference between them lies in the degree to which the technology transforms your immediate environments.
AR is digital technology that overlays something that exists, that you can see, touch, and feel. It enhances an experience you can and are having in real life.
VR, on the other hand, transports you into a space that doesn’t actually exist, except behind the headset, glasses, or visor required to create a world outside your world. The places and spaces that VR creates can, however, exist in reality, just not where you are at the time you’re experiencing them.
AR in Real Life
Augmented reality technologies are already being played out in your daily life in a number of different scenarios. In sports broadcasting, the use of technologies to overlay courses and pitches on your TV screen with sophisticated graphics that indicate the direction or trajectory of a ball or player is used regularly. AR in replays gives you a much better angle or view of a shot or move, significantly improving the viewer experience and offering better insights than even those who are ringside get.
On websites, everyone’s favorite Chatbots are generated by AI but beyond being able to “speak” to a customer service bot, some retail sites are able to offer AR as a way of “testing” their product. This includes the placement of a piece of furniture to see how it fits in a room. But even before you buy the furniture, you need to buy the home, and VR can take you on a 360-degree tour of a show house and allow you to walk through the rooms and garden without leaving your armchair. What a win if you’re relocating hundreds of miles away and want to narrow down your choices before traveling to see them.
AR can even enable customers to “try on” clothes and make-up, getting a better idea of what an item of clothing will look like on them. For e-commerce sites, this has reduced the number of returns, saving everyone a lot of time and money. The application of this kind of technology for marketing and advertising campaigns is almost limitless.
AR in restaurant menus allows you to point your phone at an item and conjure it up in 3D on your screen to “see” what your meal is going to look like.
The impact AR already has is quite astonishing, but nothing compared to VR.
VR: Oh the Places You’ll Go
It’s perhaps VR that offers the widest range of applications and can provide the most transformative experience for users. Some examples of virtual reality in everyday life are just prototypes and in the testing phase while others are already widely in use.
VR can be used to enormous benefit in training. It allows inexperienced users of expensive equipment and materials to test their skills without ever touching the actual item they’ll later go on to manufacture or repair. It allows student doctors to operate on virtual patients and dissect virtual organs, and if they make a mistake, they can simply start again. It also allows surgeons to practice complex operations before actually entering the operating theater.
In Building and Construction
The architectural and construction industries were early adopters of 3D and VR technologies which can recreate an entire structure without a single brick being laid. It allows architects to iron out any potential glitches before construction even begins and for contractors to run piping and wiring to see how the plumbing and electrical installations will fit. It can project a building onto its future site, giving prospective tenants a realistic view of their new home or office space.
Travel and Tourism
VR brings a whole new meaning to the expression “armchair traveler” as it allows you to travel and experience the depths of the ocean, the summits of mountains, and everything in between. You can take sample vacations before committing to expensive flight and accommodation bookings, and get snapshots of destinations to which you want to travel.
In the field of education, VR will enable entire classes to experience a museum or other field trip without getting on a school bus. Interactive lessons with practical experiences in art, biology — in fact in any subject — will transform the classroom for students and teachers alike.
We have seen how VR can help train doctors, but AR/VR also allows doctors to project scenarios for patients, for example in the progression of a disease or tumor. AR can provide doctors with an immediate snapshot of a patient’s vital signs and symptoms and help with diagnosis.
In the Workplace
Not only has AR/VR allowed for more interactivity in remote meetings but it can also recreate a meeting room in which all participants are “present.” This can significantly improve a company’s team or partner meetings, bringing people together in an artificial environment.
In the World of Entertainment
Nowhere has the impact of AR/VR been felt more than in the world of gaming and entertainment and it has so much further it can go. Video games using AR bring parts of the game to you, but VR takes you to the center of the action. VR can turn players into avatars who can be active role-players in a game. For online gambling, AR/VR experiences can take you to the sports event on which you are betting, eventually place you inside the reels of online slots, or place you at the table in a recreated virtual casino.
The Impact of AR/VR in Everyday Life
The impact of AR/VR on daily life is already being felt, but its impact in the future can’t be downplayed. It’ll remove the barriers to travel such as time and money, as well as those that were imposed during the Covid-19 pandemic. This will also enable society to reduce greenhouse gasses and carbon emissions significantly, impacting sustainable development goals.
It’ll speed up learning and training programs and reduce costs for students and educational institutions. It’ll open up the world of education to underserved and remote communities and provide learners with the same opportunities all over the world.
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AR/VR technology has the power to do all this and more, but will never replace real-life experiences where they’re still available. If you love to play casino online games, you may already have noticed some enhancements to your user experience thanks to technology, but you can still be a real player at the slots or at a live dealer game.
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