Virtual reality and augmented reality

Virtual reality (VR) is a technology that allows people to immerse themselves in a digitally created artificial world. It should not be confused with Augmented Reality (see our dossier on Augmented Reality and its applications).

It can be a reproduction of the real world or a totally imaginary world. The experience is at the same time visual, auditory and, in some cases, haptic with the production of feedback effects. When the person is equipped with the appropriate interfaces, such as gloves or clothing, he or she may then experience certain sensations related to touch or certain actions (blow, impact, etc.). More details about technologies on

The Oculus Rift

First “new generation” VR headset for the general public. It is a wired helmet connected to a computer with a good display quality. Controllers are also available to interact with the virtual environment displayed in the headset.

The HTC Vive

A direct competitor of the Occulus, the HTC vive is also a wired headset (soon available in non-wired) connected to a PC. It also has joysticks and requires the installation of two sensors in order to track the user in space.

The Samsung Gear VR

Autonomous and connected to the Samsung smartphone, it is obviously less powerful than the two models presented above. It is however much less bulky and still delivers a good immersive experience. You can get more information on

Lots of sensors can be used: GPS, camera, accelerometer, hygrometer, hydrometer,…

A computer to understand the environment and make the right mix with the virtual elements.

An Augmented Reality platform to show the user the result of the combination related to the environment.

There are several techniques to make augmented reality. The essence of the problem is to locate the virtual in relation to the real world.

  • Geographic coordinates
  • Determining directions
  • Image recognition

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