We’ve been watching the VR and AR space closely with an eye towards how these technologies can work on the web. While there’s no shortage of great VR experiences out there, many of them require bulky headsets and expensive gaming PCs. VR and AR on the web is exciting to us because it brings these technologies to the smartphones and web browsers we already have at our fingertips.
Google has been a major player in this space offering everything from tutorials and best practices to giving WebVR experiments a home. WebVR is incredibly flexible because the same experience can be viewed on a web browser and a VR headset, though only with a headset are you really getting the immersive experience. With AR on the web, this experience could be simplified even further in that you only need a smartphone, and it doesn’t matter whether it’s iOS or Android.
This week Google is making WebAR a reality by showing off a new prototype called Article. In their example, they show how a site like Wikipedia could embed 3D models on their page about a space suit.
Then on your phone or tablet, you can interact with the space suit by spinning and zooming with your fingers. Then by clicking the AR button, the browser uses your device’s camera to place the space suit in the room with you.
Trying WebAR for yourself
Unfortunately, WebAR is in its early days and you’ll need to jump through a few developer-focused hoops in order to try the space suit example above. If you’re feeling adventurous, the Article Github repo has everything you need to get you started on your iOS or Android device.
You can check out Four Kitchens’ WebVR projects here. With the release of these new WebAR tools, keep an eye out for some AR projects from us as well. If your business or organization has an idea for a VR or AR project, we’d love to help you build it. Just give us a shout.
Google WebAR links
- Augmented reality on the web, for everyone
- Getting started with AR on the web
- Article project on Github
- Google Poly (3D models)
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