What Is Augmented Reality?

Augmented Reality (AR) is the use of displays, cameras, and various types of sensors to augment a user’s real-world environment with artificial perceptual experience.

AR uses computer technology to augment the user’s real-world environment with digital content. With AR, digital media is superimposed over part of the user’s field-of-view to augment what they see. Typically, the user wears a see-through, head-mounted display that projects AR content onto a user’s field[1]of-view. However, various other digital tools, such as smartphones or tablets can also be used to create AR effects.

Pokmon Go and Snapchat filters are some of the most popular AR applications.

While AR is not a new concept, all the advancements in various areas, such as computer vision, sensing technologies, data storage, displays, and software  technologies, have now made AR a much more practical solution for consumer, commercial, and industrial adoption.

AR technology has been around for many years, but the industrial world has only recently started to pay significant attention to the technology. Many in the industry now use the term industrial augmented reality (IAR) for AR applications that support industrial processes.

Augmented Reality

One major benefit of AR is that it does not require dedicated hardware equipment. Machine learning and advancements in computer vision technology have made it possible to build powerful AR applications for tablets and mobile phones. These mobile solutions are already becoming common in the industrial world, making it easier for industrial organizations to adopt AR technology.

Although, still in the early stages of the AR revolution, there is an explosion of AR startups, thanks to all the interest by the venture capital (VC) world.


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