Caio H. Vilela Carvalho | X-Reality Lead Engineer | everis Brazil

Augmented Reality and Its Applications

Today, technologies that are part of the X-Reality market are growing exponentially, including Augmented Reality. This tool increasingly impresses the public and is beginning to be widely used by large companies, especially those with a direct relationship with Industry 4.0.

We live in the right time! Keep reading to find out more about this technology.

What is Augmented Reality?

Augmented Reality is defined as an “increase in reality,” i.e., a mixture of the virtual inserted in a real environment.

Augmented Reality is not a new technology; its concept has existed since 1997. At that time, it was defined by features like:

1. Connect the real world with the virtual.

2. Be interactive in real-time.

3. Enable 3D movements.

Why do we need Augmented Reality in our daily life?

To answer this question, let’s look at some topics to understand a little more about how Augmented Reality technology works, its brief history, and its current situation.

What are the anchors of Augmented Reality?

In Augmented Reality, the place or object to which the virtual element is fixed is called an anchor. For example, a picture can be an anchor and can also be an anchor of a virtual object.

To grow in the emerging technologies market, X-Reality developers began untying Augmented Reality from physical anchors based on pictures and started to track environments and objects. Despite that development, anchoring of physical images continues to be used as an additional component. Today, several applications are still developed based on this concept or even in a hybrid way.

The picture below shows how a magazine acts as an anchor for a virtual object (a projection basis).

Source: https://library.vuforia.com/features/images/image-targets.html

Currently, to use environment and object tracking technologies, state-of-the-art smartphones are required. However, in Brazil, many people still cannot afford this type of device and use basic mobile phones, making it challenging to provide Augmented Reality solutions to final consumers. That technology is therefore, mostly adopted by companies.

Source: https://developers.google.com/ar/discover/concepts

Right, but I still don’t know what this will do for me in my daily life!

The advanced study of the latest development tools in Augmented Reality will allow us to invest in a future where everyone who owns a smartphone will be able to take advantage of all the functions of Augmented Reality apps, supporting tasks such as:

1. Technical support without the physical presence of an expert.

2. Mapping one’s environment to locate objects or even guidance for visually impaired people.

3. Training environment for medical studies, mechanical studies, among others.

Areas in which Augmented Reality is already being used

Factories:

Many factories must cut specific parts in half to instruct their professionals or demonstrate their products at events using actual parts that are often expensive and unused afterward. To solve that issue, some companies use Augmented Reality to simulate an “X-ray” view of a piece, demonstrating its functions without having to damage them.

Intuitive, remote technical support for employees who operate machines daily demonstrates how to solve problems using alternative visual resources.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P2RnOWqMRD8

In manufacturing environments and combined with IoT, Augmented Reality is used to monitor equipment in real-time, obtaining data such as temperatures, possible operating issues, assembly flow, etc.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qgd37rID4Yo

Automobile:

In the automobile market, Augmented Reality is often used to instruct consumers and show car utilities, functionalities, and features, which adds technological value to showrooms and authorized dealers.

https://youtu.be/7fBPSjctbpk

Architecture:

In architecture, project demonstrations aimed at end consumers, such as building models, decorated spaces, etc. have always been highly expensive. Today, entire rooms may be decorated digitally, and models can be developed using Augmented and Virtual Reality.

World Anchor technology may be used to map an empty apartment, decorate all environments with 3D objects, and display how everything will be arranged in real-time and on a full scale without spending on materials, furniture, and expert advice.

Source: Ikea AR
Source: Ikea AR
Source: Ikea AR

Technical support:

Augmented Reality is mainly used in technical support, as it allows us to assist users without the presence of an allocated expert.

Today, remote technical support has become commonplace. Users can be guided remotely by marking the customer’s environment or physical equipment. For example, TeamViewer Pilot allows ordinary users to do that, for example when a son/daughter helps their family solve computer issues remotely by marking all interaction areas and giving voice instructions.

Source: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rzd8WRQSeGU

Despite all the references and examples we mentioned, few companies invest in technologies such as Augmented Reality. However, the fast progress and growth of these technologies, driven by investments from large companies such as Apple, Facebook, and Microsoft, should allow Augmented Reality to reach an unimaginable level.

What about you? Are you ready for these new technologies to get ahead of competitors?

Be part of Industry 4.0 and access our literature to increase your knowledge about this new world.

Bibliography and Learning Resources

Augmented Reality and IoT:
https://www.ptc.com/pt/products/iiot#IIoT-Transformation
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4gMDkG58wGs

Automotive:
https://www.fastcompany.com/90561082/envisics-car-holograms-augmented-reality-gm-50-million-fundraising
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5RtBrMuFeIE&ab_channel=MazdaUSA
https://youtu.be/7fBPSjctbpk

Fashion:
https://www.vntana.com/

Architecture:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UudV1VdFtuQ&ab_channel=IKEA

Technical Support:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rzd8WRQSeGU

Technologies:
https://developer.vuforia.com/
https://developer.apple.com/augmented-reality/
https://sparkar.facebook.com/ar-studio/

Devices:
https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/hololens
https://www.magicleap.com/en-us
https://azure.microsoft.com/pt-br/services/kinect-dk/
https://www.stereolabs.com/
https://orbbec3d.com/
https://vicovr.com/

Other:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cGBWvSxlAbM&ab_channel=TripleYYY

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