Augmented Reality on the Web

By Mario A. Martínez Latorre

Access in the easiest way, a new world of infinite possibilities

With only the usual browser on your mobile device, and without the need to install any additional components or extensions, you can enjoy awesome Augmented Reality experiences.

As from 2017, a large number of mid-range and higher range devices are compatible with this incredible functionality, implemented natively by Google and Apple in their mobile operating systems, through their respective technologies: ARCore and ARKit.

Try interacting with our "crystal ball" through the 3D viewer: rotate it, scale it and watch it from any angle.

If you are also visiting this page from an ARCore/ARKit compatible mobile device, you will be able to access Augmented Reality in the easiest and most direct way, from your own browser!

To do this, simply click on the button , which will be displayed in the lower right-hand corner of the display.

Once inside the experience, you can take pictures and even record videos.

In short, the RA is here to stay

Circumscribing us to the field of image, Augmented Reality allows us to introduce in real time (RT) on a video signal, any kind of graphic content, which will be incorporated into that footage, "augmenting" it. Up to this point, it is certainly not very "fancy", and in fact we could be talking simply about any subtitling process

The real magic begins to emerge when that video signal comes from a camera that is picking up our subjective view of the environment, as we move from one point to another. And it becomes totally relevant when the graphics we are visualizing are not boring flat pictograms, but complex 3D models, which are shown coherently at every moment from our point of view.

If that camera, the different sensors, as well as the processor that coordinates all of this, is something that we all carry in our pockets (yes, you've guessed it, in the form of a smart phone), there is no doubt that we are starting to have something in our hands that will definitely give us a lot to talk about.

The current structural transition to a much more digitized society, greatly accelerated by the current socio-sanitary situation, makes it clear that the virtual materialization of products (even those really large) that allows the Augmented Reality, is something that opens a huge range of informational possibilities, commercial and educational.

[Spoiler warning]

It doesn't stop there, because at some point "smart glasses" will become popular, and from there on... The sky is the limit!

OK, I catch it, but... Augmented Reality on the Web?

Currently, it is undeniable that we are witnessing an explosion of the so-called 3D Web, since the support that allows such content, the WebGL standard sponsored by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), is already fully implemented in any modern browser (at least from 2017 onwards).

In this way, this type of content becomes "first class citizens" in web development, at the same level that can have texts, images, videos and audios.

This evolution already allows to consider taking to the Web experiences and 3D tools, which previously only made sense through native applications, such is the case of Augmented Reality, which is an immersive way to visualize and interact with 3D content.

This web approach also benefits from a number of important advantages over native apps:

  • Compatibility. When accessed from a simple browser (the ubiquitous "Universal Application"), due to the inherent compatibility of the Web, one single development covers all platforms. For its implementation we only need the standard technologies: HTML, CSS and JavaScript.
  • Lower cost. Web developments are usually, at many levels, much less complex than those of native applications (apps).
  • Instant access. No need to download or install any app. Goodbye to "stores", here we only need to access a web page.
  • SEO friendly. Instead of developing a marketing campaign to promote a new app, we can simply continue to promote our website as before.
  • Resources Economy. Since there is no need to download anything, to enjoy the contents we will not be reducing the precious storage available in our devices.
  • Inherent updates. No need to warn the user to download updates. Due to the very operation of a web server, users will always access the latest version of the contents.

Therefore, if you are looking for a development like this for a specific communication action or any other aspect of your business, do not hesitate to contact us. We are experts.

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