Augmented Reality has been a buzzword around the tech world for years now. If you haven’t had a chance to take a peek into some of the more interesting uses of it, you really should. I guarantee the first thing you think will be “The future is here!”
While animated three-eyed green dudes walking around your desk is all well and good, how will companies create stickier applications that you won’t just want to impress your friends with, but will want to use every day? Here are a few examples of how developers may work AR into your daily life. If you want a more detailed and forward looking list, head to the Augmented World Expo in Santa Clara, CA (now in its 5th year).
What matters to you as a consumer of AR capable devices (price, style) doesn’t matter as much to companies trying to increase worker productivity. AR software startup Daqri is one of the companies banking on exactly that. Some of the industries they are working with are healthcare (imagine being able to see a 3D human heart without having get access to one) and high tech manufacturing.
As Mark Zuckerberg (well, Jesse Eisenberg) said in The Social Network, “College kids are online because their friends are online.” If it’s true for Facebook, it’s true for AR. One of the more interesting social networking apps out now is Taggar, which allows you to ‘tag’ any real world object with pictures, images, or videos. Your friends can then come along and leave a response, or ‘tag over,’ the original tag.
This is really the biggest promise of any AR browser. Retailers and marketers are chomping at the bit to have you consume their content and products in as many ways as possible. One of the best known and most downloaded of these AR browsers is Layar. With Layar, you can both tailor your view of the real world with your own information and have interactive content fed to you by one of Layar’s partners, which include members of the publishing, automotive, real estate, and education sectors.
The key to success of these or any augmented reality application is not just if it can blow you away with creative graphics or immediate access to information, but if it can deliver the right content in the right context exactly when you want it.