Augmented reality has become the talk of the town in almost every industry and with most consumers. This technology du jour gives users the ability to overlay digital displays onto anything from traditional photos to the action currently taking place around them. With so much talk circling around developments in this tech arena, it’s no surprise that event planners are excited to bring some of these innovations into their next conference. To help you see what augmented reality has to offer, here are some of the latest developments bringing a lot of buzz into the event industry space and some events that have successfully brought the technology forward.
If you want to turn a flat image into something more engaging, then Aurasma has you covered. This platform allows people to use the Aurasma app to view additional information by simply focusing their smartphone camera over an interactive image.
Augmented photos, when viewed through the app, come to life with additional content including options like video, audio, and various other forms of data. The overlay creates an on-demand interactive experience, giving marketers and event planners new options for reaching their audience.
To add Aurasma features to an image, you simply load the photo into the system, apply the Aura (a multimedia file that embeds over the picture without leaving a visual trace), and associate the additional content. Then, when users scan the picture with their smartphone app, the hidden gems are revealed and are fully ready to explore.
Being labeled by the company as a “Mixed Reality” device, the Microsoft HoloLens is a headset with transparent lenses that allows you to view the real world alongside digital holograms, virtual screens, and more. The images overlay onto whatever you are seeing, allowing the user to work with the visual content without the disconnect associated with a traditional VR experience.
Wearers of the HoloLens can also use gestures to interact with various 3D renderings, allowing images to be moved and manipulated. It also takes into account real objects in the space, such as tables and chairs, and uses those references when placing and moving the 3D holographic-style objects.
It can also be used to guide real-world tasks. For example, one demonstration had a person wearing the headset interacting with a Microsoft employee. The employee accessed the camera in the HoloLens, allowing them to see what the wearer was seeing, and then draw images on their computer that displayed for the wearer. This allowed the employee to walk the wearer through the task of rewiring a light switch based on the diagrams, providing images of the various tools, and sending instructions on their proper use.
A new augmented reality smart glasses product scheduled to hit the market in 2017 is castAR. The project was originally funded through Kickstarter, generating over $1,000,000 in support from more than 3,800 supporters. The glasses will display 3D-style images that remain in place even if the user circles around it. A companion controller is also planned while a RFID Tracking Grid will assist in identifying, tracking, and augmenting physical objects in the area.
While its full potential won’t be known until it releases, they are collaborating with developers to create a system that is sure to impress.
Augmented World Expo
Since augmented reality has started to take the world by storm, it’s not surprising that technology conferences have been dedicated to showing the latest and greatest offerings available. The largest event devoted to the sector today is the Augmented World Expo which is now preparing for its 8th annual event. It attracts technology companies from across the globe and features an extensive list of exhibitors looking to bring their developments to a wider audience.
The conference features augmented reality technologies as well as advancements in wearable computing, gesture and sensor devices, and smart glasses. For event industry specialists interested in learning more about this growing field and what solutions can help take their events to the next level, it is certainly worth scheduling a visit to this conference and expo.
Using Augmented Reality at Your Event
With developments like Aurasma, you can use augmented reality to promote your event and engage with your audience, allowing you to create marketing or informational campaigns designed specifically for the attendees. Smart glasses and similar technologies are also great forms of entertainment, giving conference goers a new experience that they are sure to remember. As more developments in the augmented reality arena release, its potential within the event industry is sure to grow with it, making it a technology area that is certainly worth keeping an eye on.