Augmented Reality (AR) vs. Virtual Reality (VR): Understanding the Differences

What Is AR vs What Is VR

Reality technologies, such as Augmented and Virtual Reality, augment or replace the real world with a simulated one. Both “augmented reality” and “virtual reality” are often used, and their respective technologies are developing rapidly. They are propelled by and reliant on rising enterprise and consumer internet usage and connectivity speeds. They are not, however, cutting-edge innovations.

Virtual reality (VR) has been all the rage in the gaming industry over the past few years. That’s because you can enjoy the best gaming experience by using your Xfinity Internet connection with this technology.

On the other hand, augmented reality (AR) has been quietly making waves in the business world. While augmented and virtual reality both hold promise for the business world, they are most rapidly expanding in the entertainment, promotion, and sales sectors at the moment.

In this guide, we’ll explore the primary differences between AR and VR. Let’s dive in!

What Is AR?

Augmented reality (AR) uses a device’s camera to superimpose computer-generated imagery (CGI) over a user’s view of the physical environment.

The major benefit of augmented reality is the way in which virtual elements blend into a user’s view of the real world. This is accomplished not via the mere display of data but rather through the incorporation of sensations, which are understood to be organic to a given setting. The famous mobile app Pokémon Go is a shining example of augmented reality technology since it lets users hunt down and capture Pokémon that appear in the real world.

Training, teaching, auditing, and inspecting are the most popular applications of AR in the business world. The healthcare industry has also benefited from technological advancements; with the correct software, surgeons and trained specialists may do intricate treatments without jeopardizing patient safety or financial security.

What Is VR?

When the real environment around you is replaced by a computer-generated simulation, you are said to be experiencing virtual reality (VR). While a plastic phone holder may do the trick, the trend these days is toward head-mounted displays. As a result of virtual reality, the gaming and entertainment industries have been completely transformed. Education, particularly in the fields of medicine and the military, and business, particularly in the form of virtual meetings, are other major users of VR technology.

Unlike earlier iterations, modern VR headsets don’t require being connected to a computer or smartphone and may be used independently. The Oculus Quest 2 is by far the most popular virtual reality (VR) headset for businesses, while the Vive Focus 3 is the preferred PRO model.

Key Differences between AR and VR


Virtual Reality

While VR and AR share some structural similarities, they are used for quite different purposes. Augmented reality complements your existing visual perception, while virtual reality supplants it. The tools and the experience itself make all the difference.

  • When compared to virtual reality, augmented reality takes place in the actual world.
  • Users of augmented reality have command over their physical presence, while those of virtual reality are at the mercy of the technology.
  • However, all you need is a smartphone and an augmented reality app to experience virtual reality.
  • While virtual reality can only improve upon an artificial reality, augmented reality can improve upon both.

Both are advanced technologies with significant untapped potential to improve people’s daily lives. Both have the potential to radically alter our usage of computers in the not-too-distant future, but which will prevail is currently anyone’s guess.

Some Real-World Uses for Augmented and Virtual Reality

AR and VR are already being used in many different fields. Industries such as teaching and medicine, production and distribution, building and development, and property management are examples.

Nike’s retail locations feature AR and VR technology. Customers can learn more about the manufacturing process by scanning Nike products such as shoes and clothing or by entering a virtual reality world and experiencing the many stages of Nike’s supply chain.

Using the camera on their smartphones and augmented reality technology, IKEA customers can virtually place furniture into their own homes to get a feel for how it will look.

L’Oréal has partnered with Facebook to offer augmented reality (AR) makeover experiences. Try out products from top luxury cosmetics labels like Giorgio Armani, Yves Saint Laurent, Urban Decay, and Yves Saint Laurent. BMW and Jaguar, two automotive giants, have been utilizing virtual reality for years to conduct preliminary design and technical studies. Before spending any money on physically constructing the pieces, this is done to test the vehicle’s visual design and object obscuration.

Virtual reality (VR) can help medical practitioners prepare for real-world scenarios, such as a junior doctor conveying a diagnosis and treatment plan to a patient or an orthopedic surgeon performing an operation.

Final Words

Numerous forecasts have been made for the size of the worldwide augmented and virtual reality market in the next years. Statista predicts that by 2024, the global market for augmented and virtual reality will have grown to $296.9 billion USD. The revenue share of augmented reality technology in the industrial and manufacturing sectors was 24.3% in 2021, and this sector is likely to maintain its dominant position in the market during the forecast period.

AR is predominantly used in the Industrial and Enterprise sectors for on-site improvements and digitization, in contrast to the gaming industry, where VR is consciously increasing. Furthermore, several businesses have attempted to integrate augmented reality (AR) into their Industry 4.0 workflow.

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