Augmented Reality News « Next Reality Bringing the impossible worlds of our imagination to life.

  • Niantic Picks an AR Fight with Pokémon GO Players via Trainer Battles Rollout
    by Tommy Palladino on December 13, 2018 at 9:40 pm

    Augmented reality gaming company Niantic Labs is now instigating conflicts between Pokémon GO players, but it's not as bad as it sounds. On Wednesday, Niantic began rolling out the new Trainer Battles player versus player fight mode, starting first with players level 40 and above. Now, the rollout is complete, with the game mode available to all players level 10 and higher. To join the melee, players can search for nearby players and then scan their battle code to initiate sparring. If no one is nearby, players can either challenge friends or spar with AI opponents (there is no matchmaking... mor […]

  • Google Assembles Marvel's Surviving Avengers & Other AR Sticker Packs for All Pixel Devices via Playground Update
    by Tommy Palladino on December 13, 2018 at 6:22 pm

    Owners of Google Pixel devices now have a plethora of imaginary friends to play with thanks to the Playground augmented reality app. The app, a rebrand of the AR Stickers app, launched as an exclusive app for the Google Pixel 3 and 3XL handsets in October. On Wednesday, Google unwrapped an update to the app on the Play Store, making the new features and its sticker packs, now known as Playmoji, available for previous-generation Pixel devices. "Playground helps you bring more of your imagination to your photos and videos with interactive Playmoji — characters that react to each other and to... mor […]

  • Cheddar's Magic Leap One App Is Now Available Online, This Is How It Works
    by Adario Strange on December 11, 2018 at 10:45 pm

    When the announcement of the Cheddar app for Magic Leap first went out on Tuesday morning, the app was not available on my updated Magic Leap One (located in New York City). However, after checking throughout the day, I can confirm that the app is now live. The free app downloaded very quickly and launched immediately with no problem, so I thought it might be good to give you a quick first impression of the app and how it works. Don't Miss: The Enterprise Leap —Robots, Gremlins, & Games Won't Save Magic Leap, but Tapping the Inner Child of CEOs Just Might To get the app, simply turn on your... mor […]

  • Magic Leap Launches Cheddar Video News Channel on Magic Leap One
    by Adario Strange on December 11, 2018 at 3:41 pm

    The team at Magic Leap just got a millennial-style boost with the announcement that financial news network Cheddar is coming to the Magic Leap One. Cheddar CEO Jon Steinberg revealed the news in a surprise tweet early Tuesday morning. Don't Miss: Hands-On with Magic Leap's Avatar Chat, Remote Virtual Meetings in AR Have Arrived Included in that tweet was a brief video from Magic Leap's YouTube channel that serves as a kind of commercial for what it will be like to watch Cheddar on the Magic Leap One. The 45-second spot shows a single man in an apartment who goes to put on a vinyl record... mor […]

  • ARCore 1.6 Gifts Developers with Improved Lighting & Support for Screen Capturing
    by Tommy Palladino on December 10, 2018 at 6:10 pm

    Christmas has arrived early for ARCore app developers, as Google just unwrapped a few iterative improvements to the augmented reality toolkit in version 1.6. The first improvement comes in the form of improved lighting in Sceneform, Google's 3D rendering library for Javascript. Now, lighting defaults to ambient light to neutral or white shades, instead of yellow in previous versions. The result is more natural looking 3D content. Objects will also appear more realistic based on environmental lighting, such as reflecting red and orange hues at sunset. Don't Miss: Google Stays Nimble with... mor […]

  • Lego Harnesses Apple's Latest Augmented Reality Abilities in Playgrounds App
    by Tommy Palladino on December 7, 2018 at 9:23 pm

    The app that Lego demoed at this year's iPhone launch event is now available in the App Store, and it showcases several new capabilities available in ARKit 2.0. The Playgrounds app enables players to access augmented reality multiplayer games with ARKit's new shared experiences features by scanning Lego playsets with the toolkit's object recognition skill. Don't Miss: Tayasui Blocks Gives iPhones & iPads a Knock-Off Lego AR Experience "Children today are mastering the art of finding new moments and forms of play and Lego Playgrounds will provide a 'live' opportunity to test and learn... mor […]

  • Walmart & Target Unwrap New Augmented Reality Features to Bring in Holiday Shoppers
    by Tommy Palladino on December 7, 2018 at 4:41 pm

    This year's holiday shopping season is shaping up to be fertile ground for augmented reality to show its worth, as both Walmart and Target have crafted immersive experiences designed to engage shoppers in the coming weeks. But the marketing similarities end there, because the AR methods used by both companies vary greatly. Don't Miss: Snapchat Ships Amazon Visual Search as Its Next Step Forward in AR Evolution Walmart, with the help of augmented reality developer Zappar and marketing partner Advantage Solutions, has decked the retail halls of its brick and mortar stores with augmented... mor […]

  • 'Atlanta' Actor Lakeith Stanfield Walks an Augmented Reality Tightrope for New York Times Magazine
    by Tommy Palladino on December 6, 2018 at 8:53 pm

    The New York Times has made a habit of publishing augmented reality stories throughout 2018, and now the media giant's magazine is getting into the act, too. As a tie-in to its annual "Great Performers" issue, which recognizes the top thespians of the year in the eyes of Times critics A.O. Scott and Wesley Morris, a new augmented reality experience is now available through the NY Times app for iPhones and iPads. Don't Miss: New York Times Lets You Visit Statue of Liberty's Torch Without Trip to NYC via Augmented Reality Using the volumetric capture method that the Times debuted for a... mor […]

  • Magic Leap Shakes Up C-Suite, Shuffles Two Top Executives to Advisory Roles
    by Tommy Palladino on December 6, 2018 at 6:10 pm

    In the aftermath of the launch of the Magic Leap One, Magic Leap has ejected two more executives from their leadership roles. Chief marketing officer Brenda Freeman and chief business officer Rachna Bhasin have been transitioned into advisory roles but will continue to report to CEO Rony Abovitz. Don't Miss: Hands-On with Magic Leap's Avatar Chat, Remote Virtual Meetings in AR Have Arrived Freeman and Bhasin joined Magic Leap in the fourth quarter of 2016, a time when the company was making noise about the impending launch of its first augmented reality device. In fact, shortly after... mor […]

  • Hands-On with Spatial's Remote Meeting App on Microsoft HoloLens
    by Adario Strange on December 6, 2018 at 12:28 am

    In recent years, many software publishers have tried to sell the business community on remote meetings via VR, but if social media chatter is any indication, it hasn't taken off in a big way just yet. However, for some, the notion of holding remote meetings using augmented reality, a medium in which you're still directly tied to the real world and not closed off in a blindfold-style VR headset, might be the better solution. Today, two such options are readily available to the public, Magic Leap's Avatar Chat, which I covered earlier this week in Part One of this remote AR meetings comparison... mor […]

  • Insomniac Games Releases Seedling — the First Paid Augmented Reality Game for Magic Leap One
    by Adario Strange on December 5, 2018 at 2:11 pm

    One the leading game developers for the PlayStation 4 and Oculus Rift platforms, Insomniac Games, is finally releasing its first major augmented reality title: Seedling for the Magic Leap One. Back in November, we gave our impressions of the game after sampling it at the L.E.A.P. conference in Los Angeles, but the big surprise this month is that Seedling will be Magic Leap's first paid app. Don't Miss: Hands-On with Magic Leap's Avatar Chat, Remote Virtual Meetings in AR Have Arrived That's right, unlike Angry Birds and Dr. Grordbort's Invaders, which are free to download by anyone with a... mor […]

  • Google Arts & Culture App Lets You Turn Your Home into an AR Museum Featuring the Works of Vermeer
    by Tommy Palladino on December 4, 2018 at 6:37 pm

    There is not a single museum that houses all of the 36 paintings of Johannes Vermeer, so Google decided to come up with a solution to give art aficionados a venue to see the artist's work all in one place — your home. Through the Google Arts & Gallery app for iOS and Android (the same app that went viral earlier this year for its Art Selfie feature), users can place an augmented reality museum in their physical space using the same dynamic as a dollhouse model. From a bird's eye view, users can select a wing to expand to a life-sized virtual reality gallery. Once inside the gallery, users... mor […]

  • Hands-On with Magic Leap's Avatar Chat, Remote Virtual Meetings in AR Have Arrived
    by Adario Strange on December 4, 2018 at 12:08 am

    Unlike the realm of virtual reality, augmented reality is less about losing yourself in some fantasy environment, and more about getting things done in the real world. So while we've seen some great games that capture the imagination on devices like the Magic Leap One and the HoloLens, when it comes to real-world usage, the biggest developments coming for AR apps that are the more practical ones. Fittingly, we now have two apps available on the devices mentioned above that cater directly to the notion of using AR to work rather than play. In this case, that work involves communication. Don't... mor […]

  • Caltech Researchers Use HoloLens to Give Directions & Object Identification to the Visually Impaired
    by Tommy Palladino on December 3, 2018 at 6:17 pm

    When computers have vision but people don't, why not have the former help the latter? That's the gist behind the Cognitive Augmented Reality Assistant (CARA), a new HoloLens app developed by the California Institute of Technology. Assisted by the depth sensing capabilities of the HoloLens, the software uses a computer vision algorithm to scan the environment and identify physical objects. The app then announces the presence of objects to vision-impaired users, using spatial audio to orient users to the relative position of objects in their space. "Imagine you are in a world where all the... mor […]

  • Universal Studios Augmented Reality App Lets You Recreate a Scene from 'Welcome to Marwen' Film
    by Tommy Palladino on November 29, 2018 at 9:35 pm

    In a world where augmented reality is becoming the hero of the movie marketing, Universal Studios has decided to use the technology to reinvent the traditional movie trailer, a time-tested tactic of film promotion, in support of the forthcoming Robert Zemeckis film, Welcome to Marwen. Now available in the Apple App Store and on Google Play, the Welcome to Marwen AR app uses ARKit and ARCore to display a scaled-down recreation of a scene from the film, complete with animated 3D characters, and highly-detailed set pieces. Based on a true story, the premise of the film makes it the ideal... mor […]

  • ModiFace Applies Its Augmented Reality Tech to Nail Polish with Fingertip-Tracking Feature
    by Tommy Palladino on November 29, 2018 at 1:42 pm

    French cosmetics giant L'Oréal isn't wasting any time putting its new subsidiary, ModiFace, to work. On Thursday, the company launched a new tool that enables a photo-realistic augmented reality simulation of nail polish shades and textures to be accurately displayed on a user's fingers in real time. To sample the Virtual Nail Salon tool, iOS device users can download the app via Apple's App Store. The app offers a wide array of stock colors and textures for users to try on, but users can also come up with their own custom nail finishes from photos in their camera roll. Don't Miss: L'Oréal... mor […]

  • US Army Declares Microsoft the Winner in Battle for $480M AR Headset Contract
    by Tommy Palladino on November 29, 2018 at 12:38 am

    In their first head-to-head major contract clash, Microsoft has emerged victorious over Magic Leap, as the US Army has awarded a $480 million contract to the HoloLens maker. Microsoft will provide 100,000 customized HoloLens units to the Army for its Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS), a project intended to provides soldiers with a battlefield heads-up display, although only 2,500 have been slated for delivery within the first two years. The US Army's vision of combat augmented reality enhances the situational awareness of soldiers in the battlefield.. "Augmented reality... mor […]

  • Augmented Reality Startup Phiar Paves Path to $3 Million in Seed Funding for AI-Powered Navigation Solution
    by Tommy Palladino on November 28, 2018 at 5:52 pm

    Another contestant has emerged in the race to deliver a mainstream augmented reality car navigation system, with Silicon Valley-based Phiar picking up $3 million in seed funding to launch its own artificial intelligence-based mobile app by mid-2019. The Venture Reality (VR) Fund and Norwest Venture Partners led the seed funding round, with Anorak Ventures, Mayfield Fund, Zeno Ventures, Cross Culture Ventures, GFR Fund, Y Combinator, Innolinks Ventures, and Half Court Ventures also participating. "AI-driven immersive and spatial technologies are becoming mainstream," says Marco DeMiroz... mor […]

  • Magic Leap Roars into the Auto World via Kia Stinger App from RelayCars
    by Tommy Palladino on November 27, 2018 at 8:06 pm

    Magic Leap One owners, start your virtual engines, as automotive virtual reality developer RelayCars has published an app to Magic Leap World that lets users customize and test drive a 2019 Kia Stinger. The RelayCars app, which is available as a free download, enables Magic Leap One users to examine a 3D model of the car from various angles in their physical space, modify its color, and view the virtual vehicle driving around the room. RelayCars has created similar experiences through virtual reality apps on iOS, Android, Oculus Go, Google Daydream, Samsung Gear VR, and Windows Mixed Reality... mor […]

  • BAE Systems Uses HoloLens to Create AR Command Interfaces Straight Out of 'Minority Report' for British Royal Navy
    by Tommy Palladino on November 27, 2018 at 5:49 pm

    The interactive displays of the future as visualized in Steven Spielberg's science fiction classic Minority Report, as well as the augmented reality interfaces used by millionaire playboy Tony Stark in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, are now closer to becoming reality in the military realm. Last week, BAE Systems unveiled a next-generation combat operations system developed as part of a roughly $25.5 million contract for the British Royal Navy for use on its battleships. The system uses the Microsoft HoloLens to display data in the field of view of the Officers of the Watch, the crew charged... mor […]