Apple’s revolutionary approach to AR

J. M. Manness, writing for Seeking Alpha [Free Regwall] digs into the importance of augmented reality (AR) and how Apple’s approach is so groundbreaking. J. M. does a terrific job explaining the technical issues involved in AR, as well as why Apple’s approach has opened the floodgates for developers (and leapfrogged Apple over Google in this area).

A few tastes:

Essentially, an API does all the hard work for the programmer. This is true here probably more so than in any other API. ARKit provides services for each of the problems listed above. In each case, the incredible work of interpreting the real world scene, all the artificial intelligence programming that has been done, all is hidden under the hood, and the programmer just needs to request a description of nearby surfaces. Placing the model into the scene will subject it to the automatically detected light sources and resize it as it is moved in relation to the viewer, or the user moves the viewing device around it.


In one how-to-program video, Brian Advent shows us how to make a simple game that places the sample spaceship at a random point in the viewing field. The user then touches the screen, and if you touch the ship, then it disappears and a new one comes up. Brian builds the app and runs it literally in less than 20 minutes.

A simple concept, but one that goes to the core of the issue. Apple made it easy for developers to harness the power of AR. ARKit solves all the technical issues, including lighting and placement, movement and permanence in space.

If you are interested in AR, take a minute to register a Seeking Alpha account (it’s free) and read the linked article. I’d search for the section called “WWDC” and start there.

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