The advent of technology has ameliorated the urge to expand its capabilities. By reducing the gaps present between the businesses and their users, it is triggering the curiosity of many. Processes in different sectors are eagerly waiting for a fine tech to transform the business. As we step into the digital era, it is a must that we welcome the development of technologies with open arms.
That is the reason why businesses all over the world integrated mobile app development with their processes. This step not only provides them a gateway to step in to complete digitalization, but it also boosts capabilities. Therefore, the introduction of Augmented Reality Technology is drawing a lot of attention from every nook and corner. It seamlessly bridges the gap between the real and digital worlds. Keeping up with the spirit, let us see how developers can master AR mobile app development.
In this blog, we would unravel all the exciting information about the development of AR-based apps. So without any further ado, let us begin with the basics.
What Is Augmented Reality?
AR technology allows businesses and developers to overlay digital data/information on top of the real-world environment. Even if AR is in its early stages of development, it is generating multiple waves in the app development landscape. The capabilities of this tech are endless, and brands are utilizing it to roll out a better strategy. According to Ronald Azuma, here are the 3 main elements that define augmented reality-
- It is interactive in real-time
- Permits movement in 3D
- Connects real and virtual worlds
It simply adds digital components to the real world, with the help of a smartphone’s camera. Many believe it to be an extension to existing techs, but its easy usability is making it popular among the audience. Users are now getting more comfortable while using AR, and want its full-fledged adoption in their day to day lives.
AR-based apps are developer-friendly and it is easy to port them on any other platform. The scope of entering this market has increased and it is expected to grow even more. Developers can make their apps free and support it with interesting monetization techniques. Since people are willing to use these apps, developers can put extra effort into changing the way they interact with the world.
An immaculate mix of contextual information and GPS has the power to enable AR to provide its users with flawless and immersive experiences. Witnessing it to step into different industries spell-bounding.
Virtual Reality vs Augmented Reality- The Ultimate Face-Off
No, this blog isn’t about AR’s cousin VR. But since a lot of newbies get confused while adjusting to their separate capabilities, it is better to put the intel out there.
In AR we overlay digital information in the real-world environment. But VR uses headsets to allow its users to experience a completely alternate reality generated by a computer. It is interesting to witness how both of these techs took a huge leap from being in a science fiction movie to the real world.
In AR’s initial days, any experience of the tech would be limited, uncomfortable, and heavy. But now because of smartphones, the complete experience is mesmerizing.
Different Ways In Which AR-based Apps Exist
Before beginning the development, the developer must choose from two different categories of AR-based apps. Both of them vary in terms of technologies and sensors. But the basic motive of displaying virtual 3D objects on top of a real-world camera view is the same. So let us look into the two different types and develop our understanding.
These apps are based on image recognition. They make use of black and white markers to display AR content. In order to view the augmented component, it is a must to point the camera on the marker’s position. After the device recognizes the marker the application puts the digital data on the marker, and only then one can see the augmented object. One thing to be kept in mind before making this kind of app is to provide an image or their description beforehand. This way the process of searching the object can be simplified when the camera analyzes the data.
This means if the objects are hard-coded in the app, beforehand, their detection becomes easier. These apps also play a huge role in advertising. Face filters are one of the most popular examples.
They work without markers. They find the user’s position with the help of a GPS, accelerometer, or digital compass. Location-based apps then overlay the AR objects on top of the real environment. It is easy to send notifications to its user, based on the location. It then provides them new AR content as per the new location. They would do wonders in giving recommendations about the nearest go-to places and also guide a user to get there. Another use case could be finding a car in the parking lot. Pokemon Go and IKEA Place are two of the most popular examples of location-based AR apps.
How To Create AR-based Apps?
Are you thinking about developing an AR application? If yes, then here are a few things you need to know about.
A lot of these apps will superimpose 3D text/image over the real environment that is being processed by the device. So it is necessary to have access to image processing expertise. This way developers can create an app that has the potential to track natural features or markers in the environment.
If one is using computer software to produce images, it is obvious that they will look credible and realistic. It is necessary to make sure that the imagery is perfectly aligned with the real environment. For a developer, acing both the elements can be difficult. But failing to deliver an authentic UI/UX will decrease the value the application provides to the user.
Creating AR-based apps need more than processing techniques and image analysis. It is a must to develop skills in mobile app development with computing vision, 3D modeling, and imaging expertise. In case one is new to the setup, it is advisable to take a little help.
Best Results For Augmented Reality SDK
If a developer knows the right features like cost, image recognition, unity support, etc, that they require in an SDK to develop an AR-based app, it is easy to choose from the following list-
- Google ARCore
- Apple ARKit
Challenges Developers Can Face During AR App Development
This technology is surely very mesmerizing, but this doesn’t mean that it has no drawbacks. Let us check them all out.
Mobile device sensors can become bias sometimes. Hence, the accuracy of the displayed objects decreases every time. Even though the sensors in new devices are accurate, but they still lack perfection.
Present on a Limited Number of Devices
ARCore, a framework to develop AR-based applications was introduced by Google in 2018. It is a highly optimized and cool framework, but the truth is that it supports a limited number of devices. It needs to support a lot of devices because it is one of the easiest ways to create AR-based apps.
Image recognition, display on, orientation sensors, GPS, camera are known to be the most energy-consuming hardware in a mobile. This means using an AR-based app for a short period of time can drain a lot of battery.
What Is The Future Of AR Mobile App Development?
As the previous year saw record growth in AR, 2020 is expected to bring a glut of new opportunities. It is comparatively young but has the potential to provide great applications. The inclination of tech giants like Apple, Microsoft, Google, etc is clearly towards this tech.
Indeed there are a few barriers present in the system right now, but the future promises unmatchable growth. Soon it would become one of the biggest terms in app technology. This would allow users to experience the real world with computer-generated data.
The reason why it is fascinating the world is that AR has the potential to enhance experiences. Things that we can see and smell can be enhanced to such an extent that it blurs the thin line between computer-generated and real-world experiences.
Apps like Google Translate, Allo, ELSA, Socratic, Pokemon GO, etc are pushing the advancements further and attracting the change. Very soon we would be able to witness massive integration of AR in healthcare, e-commerce, entertainment, gaming, travel, and whatnot.
By now you must be having a clear idea about developing an augmented reality application. So what do you think? Don’t you find it trendy? Is it your cup of tea, or will you give it a pass? Drop all your views in the comment section and let us know. Feel free to write your queries about mobile app development.
It is clear that soon the world would depend on technologies like AR, Virtual Reality, Artificial Intelligence, etc. So it is beneficial to stay updated on all the emerging techs, as they have a lot in store for us. Do let us know which technology, you want to read about next. But until then, stay hooked to this space for exciting updates.