What Is Augmented Reality & How Does It Work?

Gravity Jack In the Press

Of all the big questions that companies are asking in 2014, arguably the biggest are about a major tech buzzword: Augmented Reality. Questions like:

  • What is Augmented Reality?
  • How does it work?
  • What can it do for my business?
  • Are any big brands using it? (In other words — can I trust it yet? Or should I wait longer?)

Luck CAN favor the risk takers — but this is business. While it’d be great to on the cutting edge, how do we know which technologies will really change the ways that we as a culture will digest content, experience brands, and — ultimately — buy things. Simply put — just tell me which ones are the real “game changers.”

We’re right there with you, so we’ll be straight forward and clear: If you aren’t already using augmented reality — you will be within 5 years (and you need to be discussing your strategy…now).

What is Augmented Reality?

Unless you’re real into the tech space, it can seem confusing at first glance, but quite simply — Augmented Reality is any digital information that is merged seamlessly into the live, real world around you.

Still with us? Ok, maybe even THAT seems confusing, so we’ll put it this way. Take the yellow line on the football field when you’re watching the game on Sunday. That line isn’t really there. It’s digital information, that is merged into a live view of the real world (the players, the field, etc…). It looks like it’s there — but it’s not. It’s the result of nerd magic.

Now, imagine if that yellow line wasn’t just in the TV. It was all over your every day life, whenever you wanted it — all you had to do was hold up a smartphone, or tablet — like an iPad. And, it wasn’t just a line — it’s step by step walk-throughs hovering over your printer that’s out of ink, news content on the glass in your shower, movie trailers playing off of movie posters, social media, or — (get this) — a 3D model of that new golf driver you’re thinking about buying. Instead of having to go into the store to have a look, understand the features, or see how the shot goes, you simply hold an iPad over Golf Digest. Instantly the new driver pops up in 3D and you can spin it, rotate it — even adjust the settings like you would in real life, before testing it out on a virtual driving range.

That’d change the game, right? Uh — yeah! And that’s actually a project we did for TaylorMade (the R1 Driver).

This stuff already exists and is all around you! Don’t believe us? Here’s a video of some of what we’ve already done for clients like: Coca-Cola, TaylorMade, Maroon 5, Live Nation Entertainment, Nasdaq, Boeing, WWE and a lot more…

Who has bought in? Is Augmented Reality here to stay?

Ok, so the names above are super impressive (it’s ok, we know), but you’re smarter than to buy into a world-changing tech, without asking — but what does everyone else think? Well, it’s pretty darn promising:

Google, Facebook, Apple, Samsung, and a lot of other have already bought into Augmented Reality, spending millions to research and develop this amazing new technology. In just the last year, acquisitions, development, prototypes and consumer feedback have all been focused on this explosive technology.

Virtual Product Display: How to show your product in 3D.

At this point, a lot of people that we talk to are really interested in the whole “show my complete product line, totally interactively, in life size (maybe), and extremely high detail” thing. It’s called Virtual Product Display — and it is cool. So, before we move on to the other questions, here’s the same video clips you saw above, but with our co-founder Jennifer Richey telling you exactly what you can expect with Virtual Product Display.

Ok, so you understand that Augmented Reality is changing the way that people digest content. So, where do you start?

The answer depends on your industry, who you’re trying to reach and how you want “them” to experience you. The good news is that Augmented Reality nails it all — it’s just a matter of finding an approach.

From polling, to gaming, to videos, 3D products and more — augmented reality is the way to captivate and immerse consumers in an experience like never before.

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