Heading to a new city, whether to work or just for the day can be a daunting prospect, especially when you don’t know your way around. So augmented reality (AR) and computer vision specialist Blippar has announced its latest project, AR City, an experimental app that can help users navigate bustling cities and find points or interest.
The app uses both AR and computer vision to allow users to access information and content as they travel and navigate around cities, with three key features: AR basic navigation; Enhanced map content and Urban visual positioning (UVP). So with AR basic navigation users get an AR visualisation of walking routes, available anywhere that is supported by Apple Maps.
With Enhanced map content, currently available in over 300 cities and metropolitan areas worldwide, users get overlays of information and content related to their location in AR – for example streets and points of interest.
While the Urban visual positioning is a system that uses recognition, positioning, and directional information via computer vision, to provide more accurate localisation than a typical GPS can provide. Currently it’s only available in Central London (zone 1 and 2), San Francisco and Mountain View.
“AR City brings together crucial aspects of Augmented Reality and Computer Vision to transform how we experience our cities as we walk and explore. This technology will eventually replace the current map systems,” said Ambarish Mitra, CEO of Blippar in a statement. “The technology seamlessly combines the digital with the physical, and is a significant step in our mission to create AR natural enough that users don’t feel any disconnect. What we announced today is an important breakthrough for the industry. The technology is still in its infancy, but its impact will be significant. What we are showing today with the beta version of the app is a glimpse of its potential, and we will continue to develop it, adding further features over the coming months and improving the experience.
“This announcement continues to push the boundaries of augmented reality and computer vision, and opens access to technologies that have the potential to disrupt the fundamental architecture of vast location-based industries. This is an opportunity for other players in the ecosystem to use our technology to take significant leaps forward in travel, autonomous transport, gaming, and many other markets.”
The beta version of the app which is out now will support iPhone 6s and above. For any further Blippar updates, keep reading VRFocus.