By: Dan Wittmers
Earlier this year at Google I/O, the world was introduced to Project Glass, Google’s new Augmented Reality goggles. Sergey Brin interrupted the standard presentation to introduce the new product in grand fashion. While Brin commentated on stage, a group of skydivers jumped out of a plane above Moscone Center in San Francisco. After landing on the roof, a group of stunt bikers went over some ramps in real-time (we could see their POV), then another group of stunt experts repelled down the side of the building, and finally more bikers rode right through the crowds to deliver a Project Glass prototype right to Brin. It was one of the most amazing introductions of a technology product the industry has ever seen and left many excited for the future of wearable tech.
Google isn’t the only company working on wearable Augmented Reality goggles though. Other companies such as Olympus and Oakley have both been very open about their work in the space. Several months ago Olympus showed off their MEG4.0, which connects to your smartphone via Bluetooth and Oakley has reportedly been working on their own version of the tech since 1997. In an interview with Bloomberg, Oakley CEO Colin Badin was quoted as saying,
“As an organization, we’ve been chasing this beast since 1997. Ultimately, everything happens through your eyes, and the closer we can bring it to your eyes, the quicker the consumer is going to adopt the platform.”
While these companies furiously work to bring this futuristic technology to the masses, many have second guessed the products; asking the question, “Will consumers really want to wear these goggles?” Others have wondered whether or not Augmented Reality will ever be viable for mass consumer adoption and get past the gimmick phase in which it seems to be relegated.
One company has been working on solving the latter issue for nearly 10 years now. Founded in 2003 and headquartered in Munich with a subsidiary in San Francisco, Metaio Inc is the world-wide leader in Augmented Reality technology and specializes in developing software products for visual interactive solutions between the real and the virtual world. During their tenure, the company has accumulated over 500 projects, working with brands the likes of: Macy’s, Toyota, Universal Pictures and Adidas.
Yesterday, the company released the latest version of its Metaio Creator, the only commercially available drag-and-drop design software, now with the ability to manage content and even apps directly from the cloud.
“People aren’t necessarily experts in Augmented Reality yet,” said Peter Meier, Metaio CTO. “The Creator makes it easy for them to not only launch an experience but also to scale their content – massively, through simple cloud content management.”
The Metaio Creator allows nearly anyone to take print media and attach websites, video, 3-D
models, graphics or any other digital content using the company’s latest image recognition, visual search and Augmented Reality technology.
In addition, the Creator takes AR to a new level by allowing users to attach digital content to more complex real-world objects like products, engines, buildings or even complete environments. This enables digital producers to create interactive manuals or tour guides which could be accessible through a smartphone application.
The best part about the latest version of the Metaio Creator is that it updates the user interface and experience to make it even more intuitive and familiar; creative professionals need only drag and drop their way to a fully branded AR experience. From the actual content to building the app framework and running analytics on the finished experience, the Metaio Creator does it all without any coding or programming necessary.
The Metaio Creator supports every level of augmented reality app development. Export to native apps on major mobile platforms like Android or iOS (without having to resubmit the app for approvals), or launch it directly to the Junaio mobile AR browser with over 3 million users. To assist with existing content pipelines, Metaio has even added support for all Autodesk 3-D Content through a new .fbx converter.
This latest update to the Metaio Creator pushes the boundaries of Augmented Reality past the gimmick stage to a technology that can truly be leveraged for real-world applications; making wearable AR goggles seem not so far off from practical use for consumers.
The newest version is available for download today for OSX or Windows and you can either try the free version or purchase the full version for just over $500.
As the world-wide leader in Augmented Reality technology, Metaio develops software products for visual interactive solutions between the real and the virtual world. Based on the Metaio Augmented Reality platform, digital content can be integrated seamlessly into the user’s camera view looking upon the real world. Founded in February 2003, metaio currently employs 85+ people at two different locations. The company is headquartered in Munich with the subsidiary Metaio Inc. located in San Francisco USA. Metaio has accumulated over 500 projects, working with more than 450 renowned customers from different industries such as: IKEA, Macy’s, Toyota, Universal Pictures, Volkswagen, Adidas, BMW, Audi, Bauer Media, USA Today, Bosch, Mitsubishi Electric and LEGO. Metaio is also the producer of the world’s most advanced mobile augmented reality browser, Junaio, available for free download on Android and iOS. For more information, please visit http://metaio.com and http://junaio.com
Dan Wittmers is the Mobile Manager for Initiative – NY and the Founder of the Mobile Leaders Alliance. He has a natural understanding of the entire mobile ecosystem, and during his tenure, has had the opportunity to work with Fortune 500 brands and agencies across North America. Educated in media, messaging, development, SaaS tools and predictive analytics, he is an emerging thought leader in the mobile industry.