Augmented reality has come a long way
Over the years, we’ve written about the introduction of, uses for, and advances of augmented reality (AR) – you know, that yellow line on the football field that only exists through the lens of a camera? Even small businesses are finding creative and budget conscious marketing uses from real estate brokers helping consumers hold their phones up on a street and see values of surrounding homes, to product makers offering interactive experiences that jump off of a printed page.
At the recent insideAR 2012 conference and exhibition, the best of augmented reality demos came from Volkswagen to Macy’s and Lego, all held during Oktoberfest in Germany, hosted by Metaio (who teamed up with ValPak to bring AR to coupons for relevance years back).
The conference was keynoted by Thomas Alt, Selmin BenHimane, and Peter Meier, presenting on globally scaling the augmented city, wherein information is obtained by all residents and visitors, with the team projecting that cities could be interactive by 2014, with the help of budding developers bringing in more content, which brings in more users, which brings in more content, and so on, and so forth. Later panelists opined that the technology is still experimental in nature, presenting continued challenges, particularly with adoption and consumers having poor first experience with the limited availability of AR apps currently available.
Metaio revealed at the conference that their new “Metaio Creator” allows users to create AR experiences through a drag-and-drop interface for print materials in under five minutes, and the updated “Metaio SDK” which is said to dramatically improve the app development process.
Attendees and analysts note that the main takeaways surround adoption of the technology – the technology exists, but consumers have yet to meet technology, both of which depend on each other for advancement. The technology is still young and has few best use cases, but the video below outlines some of the hottest demos from the conference (our favorite is at 2:40, it could be the most exciting use we’ve seen so far):