Apple ARKit to transform AR

Apple is exploring the world of augmented reality in a major way with iOS 11, the latest version of its mobile operating system, launching ARKit, a framework that will make it possible for developers to easily and rapidly add augmented reality to games and apps.

ARKit is set to become the biggest augmented reality (AR) platform on the planet when it is released this autumn, using not only the processors but cameras and motion sensors of the iPad and iPhone to generate some truly spectacular AR experiences.

While it will take a few months to see the first AR games and apps built using ARKit, Apple has created a demonstration app to illustrate what the technology is capable of. Apple news and rumours website Mac Rumors recently tested the demo and provided an idea of what to expect.

ARKit utilises technology known as visual-inertial odometry to scan the world around and iPhone or iPad, enabling the devices to sense a room’s layout and detect horizontal surfaces such as floors and tables. This enables the software to place virtual objects on these flat surfaces.

With ARKit’s ability to project a virtual object into any physical space, developers will, for example, be able to create one-of-a-kind AR experiences. Several demos have already been released showing what can be expected in the future.

At least one major retailer has already agreed to use ARKit – IKEA is working on a new AR app created using ARKit that will allow customers to project the furniture company’s products into their homes before purchasing them.

IKEA has offered AR functionality for a few years, but it said the experience will be hugely improved with ARKit and that AR is likely to “play a key role” in future product lines.

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About the author


I've been a passionate evangelist for Apple and the Macintosh throughout my working life, my first love was a Quadra 605 working with a small creative agency in the south of Norfolk UK in the mid 1990's, I later progressed to other roles in other Macintosh dominated industries, first as a Senior graphic designer at a small printing company and then a production manager at Guardian Media Group. As the publishing and printing sector wained I moved into Internet Marketing and in 2006 co-founded which grew to become one the top 200 visited sites in the US (according to Quantcast), at its peak receiving over 15 million visits per month. For the last ten years I have worked as an Affiliate and Consultant to many different business and start ups, my key skill set being online marketing, on page monetisation, landing page optimisation and traffic generation, if you would like to hire me or discuss your current project please reach out to me here.

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