This technology is the star of 2017, as virtual reality (VR) in 2016. All technology giants have hands in it, from Google to Microsoft via Facebook and more recently Apple. By this fall, many iPhones will be real small augmented reality machines, capable of injecting 3D objects into the real world through their screen. Forget the helmets for now: the AR will be social and community, and mobile like Pokémon Go.
Pokémon Go, the face of augmented reality
Some will say that Pokémon Go is not the best example of augmented reality … But yet, it is! And above all, what does it matter? Most people do not even know what augmented reality is, but they know what a Pokémon is. In addition, Pokémon Go is doing pretty well in the matter. This is a good example of what could be the future of this technology, and a good evolution of Ingress, the previous application of Niantic.
It could be said that Ingress is the starting point of augmented social reality, but Pokémon Go has taken over the concept and made it popular thanks to characters known to all. The AR of the game is not technically perfect, but what matters after all? Seeing a Carapace on the doorstep is already incredible for many people. Augmented reality is a real challenge for developers. At least, Pokémon Go will have shown that an AR game can be viral and massively social.
Although the number of users has dropped to a few tens of millions worldwide, this game is still the best way to explain what augmented reality is to someone who does not know it or who does not Interest. According to founder and CEO Niantic, John Hanke, Pokémon Go still had 65 million active users per month in April 2017, and estimates suggest that the game has far exceeded the billion-dollar recipe. In comparison, the best-selling VR headset, the Gear VR, only sold 5 million, and Samsung offered a good number to customers who bought a Galaxy smartphone.
An augmented social reality model
Towards mid-2016, when we got used to the idea of wearing huge helmets of virtual reality, Pokémon Go took a radically different direction. Mobile games based on augmented reality already existed, of course, but not on this scale. This has made the application socially resolute, especially in comparison with VR helmets that completely isolate you.
There is no doubt that the best concepts of augmented reality will explore this social aspect in the future: in classrooms with smartphone apps like Google Expeditions, through glasses like Snapchat, or perhaps in community worlds like Pokémon Go, probably the best augmented social reality model on the smartphone at the moment. Going to Pokémon with her children, talking to strangers in a cafe about the creatures that have appeared in the area, everyone’s eyes on her smartphone but playing together, sharing the same virtual world: the VR did not The least application of this kind.
When developers try to design a super augmented reality application in the future, they will take Pokémon Go for reference, not necessarily for its use of AR, rather because it’s the application that everyone has used. Admittedly, the Pokémon license has a strong fan base behind it, but the Niantic mobile game has conquered a much wider audience. Its vitality makes it the best example of success, and a model to follow.