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Comparison of Web App, VR, AR for Creating Learning Experiences
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Comparison of Web App, Virtual Reality (VR), and Augmented & Mixed Reality (AR) for Creating Learning Experiences

Version 1.0 | Short URL bit.ly/webvrar | MathewGeorghiou.com

Web App

Virtual Reality (VR)

Augmented &

Mixed Reality (AR)

Key Benefits &

Differences

Familiar, flexible, convenient, portable, comfortable, and accessible without special hardware requirements.

Visual, emotional, and kinesthetic engagement of being in a fully-immersive environment simulating anything that can be imagined.

See and interact with virtual markers and objects integrated directly within your real-world physical environment.

Device & Space

Hardware

Requirement

Any computing device — phone, tablet, Chromebook, computer

VR Headset needed and may or may not need a computer

AR Glasses, tablet, or smartphone with camera

Physical Space Requirements

Minimal when using a

personal computing device

Varies based on sitting,

standing, or moving

Varies based on sitting,

standing, or moving

Convenience

Very convenient

Moderately convenient

Very convenient

Portability

Browser-based apps can be played anywhere without a dedicated device. Installed apps require access to the device on which the app is installed.

Less portable due to headset. More portable if using a wireless headset with built-in computer.

Depends on device used

Learner Experience

Environment

Virtual 2D or 3D World

or Interface

Virtual 3D World

Real World enhanced with virtual objects

Immersiveness

Can use realistic illustrations, photos, and 3D environments

Fully immersive 3D environment inside of headset

Virtual objects integrated into the real world

Presence

Feels like looking

through a window

Feels like you are there

You are actually there

Interaction

Mouse, Keyboard

Hands, Head, Body

Hands, Head

Accessibility for People with Disabilities

Full accessibility may be possible depending on the experience

May be challenging for people with visual or motor impairment

May be challenging for people with visual or motor impairment

Comfort

Comfortable

Headset may be uncomfortable for some. Wearing a headset for more than 1 hour is uncomfortable for most. Motion sickness is also a consideration.

Comfortable if using a stationary computing device. Moving the device frequently may be uncomfortable. AR glasses may be uncomfortable for some.

Safety

Completely safe

If standing and moving, requires space free of physical hazards. Wired headsets may be a minor tripping hazard.

Safety may be at risk if interacting with real equipment. Visual distraction may be a safety concern.

Privacy

Depends on the experience

Depends on the experience

Depends on the experience

Session

Duration

Ideal for any duration

Not ideal for very short or very long sessions due to the headset. Battery life may also be a consideration.

Ideal for short and medium duration. Battery life may also be a consideration.

Assessment of Learner Performance

All options possible

All options possible, particularly physical movement

All options possible

Type of Learning

Text-Based

Learning

Best

Not Ideal

Not Ideal

Audio-Based

Learning

Best

Not Ideal

Not Ideal

Video-Based

Learning

Ideal

Possible but not ideal unless using immersive video

Possible but not ideal

Game & Simulation Based Learning

Possible

Possible

Possible

Reviewing Detailed Reports and Data

Best

Not Ideal

Not Ideal

Procedural

Learning

Best for conceptual procedures

Best for physical procedures and certain conceptual procedures

Best for procedures overlaid on real world objects and environments

Equipment

Learning

Interact with virtual equipment

Interact with virtual equipment

Interact with real equipment

Spacial

Learning

Possible but not ideal

Ideal for virtual environments

Ideal for real environments

Kinesthetic

Learning

Not ideal

Ideal for virtual environments

Ideal for real environments

Rote

Learning

Ideal

Depends on the experience

Not ideal

Explore

Open World

Explore virtual world

Immersed in virtual world

Real world only

Group Interaction

Meetings

Possible

Possible, but not ideal for long meetings

Possible but not Ideal

Group

Learning

Possible

Possible

Possible

Multiplayer

Possible

Possible

Possible

Live Human

 Interaction

Possible but not

fully immersive

Fully immersive

Possible but not

fully immersive

Virtual Character Interaction

Possible but not

fully immersive

Fully immersive

Possible but not

fully immersive

Production

Time and Cost

to Develop

Depends on the experience. Reduce time and cost by using existing platforms and assets.

Depends on the experience. Reduce time and cost by using existing 3D models and environments.

Depends on the experience. Reduce time and cost by using more of the real world and less virtual objects and interactivity.

Deployment

Easy and flexible

Extra effort required

Depends on target device

Technical Support Requirement

Software

Software & Hardware

Software and maybe Hardware

Ongoing Maintenance Requirement

Depends on the platforms used

Depends on the platforms used

Depends on the platforms used


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More Resources

This comparison table was created by MathewGeorghiou.com

Simulation & Game Based Learning Newsletter — bit.ly/linewsletter

Educational Games and Simulations for Instructors — GoVenture.net

Game and Video-Based Training for Everyone — GoVentureCourses.com