Augmented Reality – Visual Magic with Endless Possibilities
Augmented Reality is all about co-existence of digital content with the real world. The numerous applications that can be developed are only limited by imagination. Coming years will surely witness AR becoming more commonplace enhancing the digital quality of our lifestyles. After all, life is always in continuous augmentation!
Augmented Reality (AR) is an emerging technology that blurs the barrier between reality and computer-generated enhancements. While virtual reality is a recreation of the real world, Augmented Reality is an add-on to the real world than a recreation of it. Augmented Reality enhances reality.
The basic idea of AR is the merger of Real and virtual worlds, a superimposition of the real world with text and graphics and other sensory enhancements, leading to an enhanced and interactive user experience in real time.
With the help of advanced AR technology (e.g. adding computer vision and object recognition), the information about the world around us becomes interactive and digitally usable.
Applications of AR
Application segments vary from Tourism, Gaming, Retail marketing and Education, to name a few.
Location Based Services
- Navigate around places with instant information on monuments, locations and objects of interest aiding tourism
- Play games in real world with real items by creating an interactive virtual playground with AR technology
- Augment school text books with interactive digital content, quizzes, audio clips and explanatory videos
- Live interactive imaging for assisting physicians & medical students, leveraging the massive mine of patient data
- Minimally invasive surgery
- Enhancing in-store experience – shopper will see discount coupons or other information for products on a shelf in a store.
- Augmenting catalogs with videos and other digital content
- Eyewear will evolve over the coming years with comfortable stylish glasses with powerful embedded technology which would display information about objects identified in the visual range. Shown in the pic is the Google Glass being tested out.
- Annual Mobile AR Market is expected to approach $1.5 Billion by 2015 and is expected to cross 1Billion consumers by 2020.
- In 2010, there were 380 Mobile Applications based on Augmented Reality
- Most attractive segment is Smart phone followed by tablets and so on
- Location Based Services and Games are most lucrative segments
- Over 2.5 billion mobile augemted reality apps to be installed annually by 2017
*Source: Juniper Research 2010
Developer investment in AR
Developer investment (AR) applications will total US$670 million this year, according to a new market forecast from ABI Research. The annual amount is expected to exceed US$2.5 billion in 2018, as AR becomes a more everyday part of mobile experiences, especially in the domain of retail and marketing.
Cloud-based content libraries are convenient for image recognition technologies. The leading SDKs, Qualcomm’s Vuforia and Metaio, introduced cloud recognition capabilities in 2012, and moves like these that will help bringing AR to the mainstream.
- Entertainment Movie Poster: Upon invoking the AR app and focusing the camera on the poster or newspaper AD, options are given to user for viewing movie trailer, song download, Facebook fan page, ticket booking and IMDB
- Education App: A chapter in a school textbook is augmented with educational video and questions taken from the CD associated with the book
- Retail in-store experience: Products such as mobile phone box, Kelloggs Chocos box & Croma Catalog are augmented with their specifications, price, reviews and other information
- For the Enterprise – Sasken Conference Room Booking App: This application allows a Sasken employee to check the availability of a conference room and book it by pointing his/her mobile phone towards the conference room board.
Authored by Anuradha CS