It's not as new as you might think.
Talk about Augmented Reality (AR) has exploded recently with the popularity of the Pokemon Go! mobile game. But what does that mean? Is this a new term? Does it have anything to do with mobile learning? First, check out this video from Common Craft (2010).
(Author's note: the data doesn't "magically" appear when you scan a restaurant. That's the work of the app, developed by a programmer intentionally).
The video puts it simply for us. Augmented Reality is the real world we observe with our senses, augmented with a layer of digital data and/or images. .
What is required?
As stated in the video above, a few key components are critical to creating an AR experience:
- Device equipped with a camera and screen
- Internet connectivity
- AR apps/software
- Location Services are helpful
You may already be using AR.
(Chris Martin of Tech Advisor demonstrates how to use Snapchat filters).
Augmented Reality is more common than you might think. An infographic by Drew Lewis of Touchstone Research (2016) states that 30% of smartphone users are using AR apps at least once per week. If you’ve ever used a Snapchat filter, scanned an Ikea catalogue with your phone using their app, driven a car with a windshield speedometer display, or, yes, if you’ve played Pokemon Go!, you are already familiar with AR.
Isn't this just a different term for Virtual Reality?
There are a lot of related technologies that immerse us in different degrees of digital reality. Augmented Reality is one of them. The three most prominent are VR, AR, and MR.
Above: Magic Leap's visual representation of different digital realities. Their logo represents MR (mixed reality). Image: Alizila.
These differences are summed up well by Wired's Peter Rubin:
- Common Craft. (2010, June 10). Augmented reality - explained by Common Craft [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D-A1l4Jn6EY
- Lewis, D. (2016, August 4). Infographic - the history and future of augmented reality. Retrieved from http://touchstoneresearch.com/infographic-the-history-and-future-of-augmented-reality/
- Rubin, P. (2016, April 19). AR, VR, MR: making sense of Magic Leap and the future of reality. Retrieved from http://www.wired.com/2016/04/differences-between-vr-mr-ar/
Contributed by Jolene Fiarchuk