Do VR and AR versions of an immersive cultural experience engender different user experiences?

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Downloads (Pure)


Although Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) user experiences have received large amounts of recent research interest, a direct comparison of different immersive technologies’ user experiences has not often been conducted. This study compared user experiences of one VR and two AR versions of an immersive gallery experience ‘Virtual Veronese’, measuring multiple aspects of user experience, including enjoyment, presence, cognitive, emotional and behavioural engagement, using a between-subjects design, at the National Gallery in London, UK. Analysis of the self-reported survey data (N=368) showed that enjoyment was high on all devices, with the Oculus Quest (VR) receiving higher mean scores than both AR devices, Magic Leap and Mira Prism. In relation to presence, the elements ‘spatial presence’, ‘involvement’, and ‘sense of being there’ received a higher mean score on the Oculus Quest than on both AR devices, and on realism the Oculus Quest scored significantly higher than the Magic Leap. Cognitive engagement was similar between the three devices, with only ‘I knew what to do’ being rated higher for Quest than Mira Prism. Emotional engagement was similar between the devices. Behavioural engagement was high on all devices, with only ‘I would like to see more experiences like this’ being higher for Oculus Quest than Mira Prism. Negative effects including nausea were rarely reported. Differences in user experiences were likely partly driven by differences in immersion levels between the devices.
Original languageEnglish
Article number106951
JournalComputers in Human Behavior
Early online date20 Jul 2021
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021


  • Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, user experience, presence, enjoyment, engagement

Cite this