VR vs. AR – What’s the Difference?

As Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) continue to gain steam, you might be wondering what the difference is, and more importantly – how it affects your business. Both AR and VR are based on the same technologies, which is a graphical overlay that is directed by the user’s experience, based on their movements. Although similar in their concept, they’re utilized very differently.

What is Virtual Reality?

Virtual Reality (VR) is a very immersive experience and the goal is to minimize other outputs. VR can make the user feel like they are in an entirely different world. This technology brings a different dimension to shopping, learning, and other experiences.

How is Virtual Reality Used?

To experience VR, users need a virtual reality headset that will immerse them into a different world. This will be huge for retailers moving forward to enhance and drive a more personalized shopping experience for consumers. Retailers will be able to increase consumer engagement and offer a variety of brands without layout restrictions. In the future, consumers will be able to complete an entire shopping experience in VR.

What is Augmented Reality?

In contrast to VR which is a fully immersive experience, Augmented Reality (AR) requires interaction with reality. AR is a digital overlay of virtual objects onto the physical world. Users can experience AR through their smartphone or tablet for different applications.

How is Augmented Reality Used?

AR makes it easier for consumers to find exactly what they are looking for when they shop. By using AR shoppers can test out how products look and fit in their home before they buy it. This eases the buying process when shoppers are trying to decide on large purchases, like furniture, or even deciding on a paint color.

VR is more of a business application, while AR is a consumer application, both can be used to increase student engagement while they shop.

Sources: forbes.com, venturebeat.com, forbes.com

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