Apple and Ikea Officially Ignite the Augmented Reality Wars

One of the centerpieces of Apple’s Keynote presentation last Tuesday (besides the iPhone X) was a push towards more Augmented Reality (AR)-enriched experiences. Interested developers can use the Cupertino, California-based company’s ARKit to blend real-world objects with virtual elements, displayed on their phone screens.

Considering the millions of iOS users in the United States alone, what Apple has effectively done is make the technology available to a larger mass of people, whether as a creator or an end-user.

Google, perhaps as a response, released ARCore, an AR development toolkit for the Android.

Still, the search-engine giant has a mountain to climb if it wants to wage war with Apple. Because Apple products are in their own eco-system, apps do not need exhaustive versioning. If the device meets the minimum system requirements (iOS 11 and running an A9 chip), it can view AR. Google, on the other hand, has to contend with a multitude of devices that use Android. (Currently, ARCore is available on Google Pixel and Samsung Galaxy 8.)

Google is never one to back down from a fight though. And from the looks of things, they are more than ready to compete. Demonstrations of what ARCore can do are viewable on their website

Sprucing Up Your Home with Augmented Reality

In the heels of this refreshed initiative towards AR, Ikea, everyone’s favorite dorm-room, and starter-home outfitter unveiled Ikea Place. Place is an app that uses AR—built with Apple’s ARKit—to let customers get all Property Brothers on their living spaces.

To use, you need to scan your floor, then point your phone’s camera to a section of your house that needs new Ikea furniture. Next, place one of the 2000 3D-rendered models to view. (Don’t worry about whether things would fit: The furniture will scale based on provided room dimensions.)

The free app will be available in late September. Ikea says that Ikea Place will play a role in future product releases—something along the lines of showing customers whether a winged office chair has a place in their living room.

Myron writes about his travels in his free time. He also participates in language-learning groups to improve the six that he currently speaks. He is based in South Jersey.

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