What is Virtual Reality?

Virtual Reality (VR) is a computer technique that makes it seem like you are in a different reality. With special VR glasses, visible reality is simply replaced by computer-generated images. The glasses contain a screen and block your view of the outside world. Because your eyes each see their own image, that light differs from each other, you see depth in the virtual environment. In other words: you then look in 3D.

Examples of VR experiences

A virtual reality can resemble the world as we know it, but it can also be a completely fictional environment. A realistic VR experience is, for example, an operating room of a hospital in which you perform a “practical test”. A fictional VR experience is, for example, a computer game with zombies.

Other senses in virtual reality

You often hear matching sound through headphones, but other senses are less often addressed by the illusion. A VR experience becomes even more realistic by, for example, smells and the feeling of wind.

Moving in virtual reality

Because sensors follow the movements of your head, the VR environment moves in the same way. This way you can look around in virtual reality. More advanced systems even recognize it when you walk around or crouch. They take over the movements in virtual reality.

Using hands in virtual reality

With some VR systems you can also see your hands and pick up virtual things, for example. For example, you hold a controller in your hand or put on special gloves.

What is Augmented Reality?

Augmented reality (AR) Is different from VR. With AR, computer-generated images are shown over the real world, so that you can observe both at the same time. In VR you only see the computer generated environment.

What is Mixed Reality?

Microsoft uses the term mixed reality (MR) in Windows 10 as an alternative to VR and AR. According to Microsoft, there are also products that are in between VR and AR, or combine in 1 product.

For the time being, these products are not available and mixed reality is a confusing term. Microsoft so falsely creates the illusion that they offer something “different” than AR and VR. The MR glasses from Acer, Dell, Lenovo, HP and Samsung are just VR glasses. The Microsoft HoloLens, on the other hand, is AR glasses.

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Connect VR glasses to a powerful Apple computer to view all the results of your VR experience.

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What can you do with virtual reality?

Virtual Reality makes all kinds of experiences possible that you cannot just have in real life. For example, an excursion to a distant country without actually traveling. You can also use things that you normally don’t have, such as driving around in a car that has yet to be produced.

There are many more applications, such as:

  • Entertainment: computer games, concerts, movies and sporting events.
  • Attractions: team outings, amusement parks, game halls, VR cinemas and VR museums.
  • Photos and videos: 360 degree photos and videos of your friends and family.
  • Healthcare: for example in rehabilitation, in the treatment of psychological complaints and in the case of fear of flying and fear of heights.
  • Training: For example, to practice public speaking or to follow a virtual football training.
  • Sales: Visiting homes, fundraising and trying out products.