Both augmented and virtual reality have the remarkable ability to alter our perception of the world. However, what’s the difference between the two and why is everyone so excited about it?

First, let’s address the difference between augmented reality and virtual reality. We found a comparison that perfectly captures the difference: Think scuba diving versus going to the aquarium.

With virtual reality, you are able to swim with the sharks and transport undersea. On the other hand, with augmented reality, you can watch the shark swim in your living room instead. Uber cool, right?

With VR, users are able to experience a more immersive and dramatic exposure. It expands the user’s senses to limitless possibilities for different experiences. They are able to leave reality and take a leap towards any virtual environment. However with AR, it only “augments” the user’s current state of presence. The user has not moved anywhere and their current reality is only enhanced by the addition of something.

So–what’s got everyone so excited about altering their realities? Well, for the people who are able to spend time with such systems, they are convinced that they’ve witnessed and been a part of the future.

From the Oculus Rift and Samsung Gear VR , mainstream society is now more likely to embrace such animated and life-like realities in the future of gaming, communication and brand experiences.

According to the Cisco Visual Networking Index for Mobile, they predict that Virtual Reality traffic will increase at a 60% compound annual growth rate thru to 2021. The number of VR headsets is expected to grow at the same rate– to nearly 100 million by 2021. More than half of these will be connected to smartphones (Cisco VNI Mobile, 2017).

To find out more about how your industry can benefit from immersive Virtual and Augmented Reality experience, see more of Advantech’s Video Processing and Encoding solutions here!