Virtual and Augmented Reality: The Rising Digital Culture on Social Media
When social media platforms like Facebook or Instagram were launched, did we think it would become an integral part of our lives? Or that in one decade these platforms will grow tremendously?
The answer can either be yes or no. We humans have the nature of exploring new things every day. More updates and technological upgrades are being done on these platforms.
The generation we are living in practically cannot imagine a day without scrolling through our Insta feed or not updating Facebook. These platforms have become our virtual best friends.
But as our generation is increasing, so is the evolution of the digital landscape. The entry of augmented and virtual reality has made huge changes on social media.
Since the invention of Ar & VR technology, the market value has only increased. The market value will top more than $150 billion by the end of 2021. A common example of AR games is Pokemon Go. It became a cultural phenomenon overnight. The popularity of this game crossed international borders.
You might be thinking that VR is only limited to games. Let us remind you with some examples of VR in the social media platform-
- Toms, a known shoe company, inspired their customers to wear VR headsets to experience a virtual trip in Peru. The company is famous for donating one pair of shoes to needy ones. They took the customer to Peru to visit the school where they were donating shoes.
- Another use of VR accessories occurred during London’s Fashion Week. Those who couldn’t attend the TopShop’s fashion show experienced a virtual one wearing a VR headset.
- People who love adventure can experience mountain climbing with a VR headset and sensory remote. Adidas teaming with Somewhere Else is providing this wholesome experience.
- Famous car brand Mercedes also stepped forward to indulge in Virtual reality. Since their launching of the SL model, they are giving virtual drives along many roads.
- Domino’s latest pizza filter allows the customer to create a curated pizza-themed moment. By doing this they can virtually enjoy their created pizza and then can order it.
With the application of AR & VR technology, the list can go on and on. But with this hype of AR & VR, what exactly do we understand about them?
What is AR & VR?
People often confuse Augmented reality (AR) and Virtual reality (VR). Both might have some similarities but they are quite different.
Augmented reality is a more enhanced version of our physical world. AR technology is being created by enhancing the sound, visual elements. Other sensory stimuli are also enhanced to create an augmented reality. The fundamental technology lying is overlaying the visual and auditory experiences.
Augmented reality is created upon the physical world. The virtual items are just overlayed in the physical dimensions. This feature is extensively used by marketers and retailers.
Some examples of the digitalization of AR tech is-
- Beauty brands like Sephora are prohibiting the testing of beauty products physically. Instead, they are turning to AR to assist their customers in buying beauty products. A virtual try-on beauty tool named GLAMlab has been making more than usual through AR beauty assistance.
- Another way AR is helping retailer shops is through virtual closets. Some companies are collaborating with Snapchat. With the help of Snapchat, they can virtually step inside a dressing room and try on different clothes.
- Brands like Levi’s are further taking the AR technology a step further by enabling friends to shop together. This feature enables two people to shop together through a video-watching app.
Unlike AR technology, Virtual reality (VR) enables the user to immerse in a new environment. They let us indulge in an animated scene or travel to a whole different place. We can take photos in a new location and we can do a ton of other activities too.
Virtual reality takes the form of a combination of software and hardware. The software creates the virtual world around us. And to visualize and experience virtual reality, we use a hardware device.
It can be any virtual accessories like an oculus rift, or headphones, or gloves. Both the combination of the software and a hardware device makes virtual reality more realistic.
Is AR-VR the Future of Social Media?
Yes, even if today this technology is not completely used, after a few years it will be. The integration of AR/VR started a few years back.
Companies like Google and Facebook began integrating different AR/VR technologies to improve their consumer experience long ago. Google Glass started this trend by overlaying the physical world to the virtual one.
Virtual technologies are becoming more popular as it gives creators the chance to communicate better. Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s founder, is already planning to robust AR element in-camera effects.
Snapchat also brought Imagine Media, an AR start-up. This shows how different social media platforms are advancing by adapting different technologies. AR-VR technology aims for a better marketing experience. Not only that this helps to build a warm relation between the customer and the brand.
Without any second doubt, AR-VR will rule the digital world. It will reshape the communication and interaction between brand and consumer.
Instagram, Facebook, and others are testing and trying new things to enhance the overall service. With COVID-19, the era of digitalization has increased more than ever. The transition of conventional ways to the digital era will change every dynamic of our social platforms. Looking for the latest AR app for your iPhone? Check out SuperWord.