Augmented reality for phone

Has augmented reality finally hit the mainstream?

Spring 17 issue print-displayIn the new issue of Out of Chaos, Cindy Walas and Kevin Keane, who represent Stampatech in the US, examine where AR is today. The article includes a list of types of AR, who the players are today, examples of good AR.

We jumped on the opportunity to team up with them to create a printed version of our magazine enhanced with rich media to become as rich as its digital counterpart. It was an interesting experience and a challenge. For one, we realized that what makes sense to animate in the digital version might not make sense in the printed version. For example, Kevin O’Connor, in his article, Viewing prints for critical color, included a short video clip to illustrate the passage of filaments from yellow to blue, and what they meant to the eye. Perfectly appropriate in the digital version, not so much in the printed one. That’s because accessing rich media from a printed page requires action – scanning the image with a phone to see the clip. Makes sense for a movie or interview that provides additional information, not for this.

As we were researching this article, we found out that AR is everywhere even if not yet adopted. You’ll find it in malls, in children’s coloring books, on billboards, in magazines for editorial and for instant shopping. Pokemon GO was everywhere. It’s astounding.

So why isn’t everyone accessing rich content? I could be because there is no standardized reader app. Every AR company, and some companies who use AR, require that a proprietary app be downloaded. That’s a lot of apps. But things are moving on that front and we will not be surprised to see a standard emerge, possibly from Apple, in 2018.