Advantages And Limitations Of Augmented Reality

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Abstract

The technology of AR (Augmented reality) has grabbed the attention of the big giants of the technology sector in the recent years. The proof for this can be easily notice by their level of involvement in the development of the technology, the companies like Microsoft betting big on their products such as the Holo lens. They claims they’ll bring computing to fields were it wasn’t possible before like construction, medical, engineering etc. The field also has lot of future potential as it requires expertise in various fields. Also the industry helps boosting the growth of other industries such as Cloud Computing. The paper further discusses the usage of AR in the upcoming year as a tool for development at Industry Level.

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Augmented Reality

Augmented Reality can be defined as combination of real world with virtual environment. Augmented reality can also be seen in the miniature forms in the apps such as snapchat wherein the user can add virtual stickers to images being shot in real time as well.

Functioning of the Augmented Reality Headsets

The structure of augmented reality glasses work by projecting the light to display the content directly in front of the user eyes, the headset then simultaneously processing the position of the head using the inbuilt sensors and also record (tracks) the movement of hands and the head and remembers the environment around itself. The virtual object being positioned around it is also noted down by the headset. The headset also analyses the hand moments directly using gesture based control or with help of joystick like controllers. The display is also transparent thus it serves only when the display is required or else the display is functioning as the glass.

The Uses for AR Headsets in the Industry

The application for AR headsets can be seen in many industrial avenues including Construction Sites, Advanced Machineries, development of satellites, etc. Some noteworthy applications would be

  1. Studying and Collecting the Structural details of the building Virtually: Construction of some structures such as skyscrapers are be very expensive and time consuming so for that is requires high quality work and not even slight error as it could risk the lives of many thus using the AR headsets and collecting data and handing over details of the projects could help better visualize the projects and also help to collect data.
  2. Repairing of the Advanced machineries without extreme expertise: The advanced machineries has many moving parts which causes wear and tear to itself, so, with the use of AR headsets the machineries could be repaired with understand the actual problem by running the simulations. Thus making the changes easier and simpler than before
  3. Training the for advanced mechanical designing: The designs before had to be visualized before being constructed which imposed more probability of error as it allowed only very few people to understand the design and required lot of calculation and markings to be made also it required the design to be made in different projections. But the AR headsets could help people better visualize the project and improve usability of computers as it allows for multiple dimensions of 3D models to be super imposed directly on the field/are being worked on.
  4. Better data collections of the physical environment: The camera and the sensors could help humans to collect more data points and then help to create a better model required as per the needs of the project.

Advantages of Using the Augmented Reality

Ideally it includes the use of computing devices on a whole another level helping the users to identify the use of the available resources with ease and thus use the resources more effectively. Some other advantages include

  1. Due to use of this of AR headset it would result in chances of lower the human error as the blueprint of the project could be handed to everyone easily and made understand in a more effective way.
  2. As AR works in the conjunction with the natural environment it help with its super imposition of virtual objects and check the work with a simple glance
  3. AR would also help to bring a computer (ubiquitous computing) for more fields and help computer come out of the existing zones to help and increase the productivity.
  4. Live minor and major corrections could be made on projects and be transfer to everyone seamlessly.

Current Limitations of AR

  1. Lack of Computing Power: The hardware being developed today is not sufficient enough to fulfill the computing needs. AR needs to calculate series of complex calculations such as the movement of the user and the placement of the objects around as well as it would also require changing the projections depending on the same.
  2. Bulk of the Headset: AR headsets produced today are big in size due to amount of the hardware inside and it also doesn’t have ergonomic design which makes it even more cumbersome to be worn for a long period of time.
  3. Cost: AR headsets are extremely expensive than tradition computer which paves a way for the potential users.
  4. Lack of Availability: The AR headsets are mostly available for industrial usage and that to in selected countries (with proper facilities).
  5. Low selection of software: As compared to traditional computer the availability of the software application is lower in AR. Very few selected companies are producing software for the AR technology to be used.
  6. Limited Availability for Open Source System: The technology does offer any open source community or any type of the open source/design software/hardware which again leads to the slow development of the technology

Solutions:

  1. The computing needs to properly manage the gap between edge computing and cloud computing. The more data being processed on cloud the better as it would help the devices to live longer and be more compact.
  2. The bulk can be reduced only by the use of advanced hardware which requires no to very little cooling. Also the weight distribution can also result in more comfortable experience of the users, the main display related technology can be added towards the front and the hearing aid could be added towards the sides and the processing and data transmission could be added at the back to more efficiently distribute the weight.
  3. The cost can only be reduced when more OEMs start to roll out their versions of AR headset which lead to fierce competition and thus the AR headsets getting mass produced.
  4. The initiative of creating a pen source software community around the AR could motivate hobbyist developers as well as the existing open source developers to look into AR software which will also help gain attention of ISV.

References

  1. Bohn, B.( Feb 24, 2019).Microsoft’s hololens 2: A $3,500 mixed reality headset for the factory , not for the living room. The Verge
  2. Stein, S.( Feb 28, 2019). Hololens 2 hands-on: This feels like practical magic. C|NET
14 May 2021

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