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What's the Difference Between AR and VR?

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Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) have exciting potential in the future of gaming, marketing, e-commerce, education, and many other fields. Both technologies are known for their enriched experience that brings together a virtual world and the real one with enhanced, 3-D visuals. Although it can be easy to mix up the two, there are some significant differences.

What Is AR?

Almost any person with a smartphone can get access to augmented reality, making it more efficient than VR as a branding and gaming tool. AR morphs the mundane, physical world into a colorful, visual one by projecting virtual pictures and characters through a phone's camera or video viewer. Augmented reality is merely adding to the user's real-life experience.

What Is VR?

Virtual reality takes these same components to another level by producing an entirely computer-generated simulation of an alternate world. These immersive simulations can create almost any visual or place imaginable for the player using special equipment such as computers, sensors, headsets, and gloves.

What's the Difference Between the Two?

The distinctions between VR and AR come down to the devices they require and the experience itself:

  • AR uses a real-world setting while VR is completely virtual
  • AR users can control their presence in the real world; VR users are controlled by the system
  • VR requires a headset device, but AR can be accessed with a smartphone
  • AR enhances both the virtual and real world while VR only enhances a fictional reality

Jobs in the VR and AR Industry

These new, evolving technologies produce endless opportunities for businesses and employment—By 2022, the AR and VR market is projected to grow to $209.2 billion. VR and AR are transforming industries through software and hardware development, graphic design, research, and more.

In-demand careers developing and improving VR and AR technology include:

  • Software engineering and development
  • Project management
  • Software maintenance
  • Graphic design

As virtual and augmented reality become more entwined in how we work, play, and learn, the industry will only continue to grow. The digital design program at Tulane School of Professional Advancement connects design and innovative technology to help students stay on the cutting edge of these industries while turning their passion into a career. Take the first step and request more information about SoPA today.

Request more information about Tulane SoPA's programs and admissions process

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