Augmented reality is catching on at a rapid rate. The AR market is predicted to become a $90 billion industry by 2020.
Augmented reality is spreading faster than anyone could’ve predicted. 53% of consumers report being interested in trying augmented reality apps in the next six months.
If you’re a developer, you’re going to have to come to grips with augmented reality app development at some point. Here are some of the best tools to help you get started!
The Best Tools For Augmented Reality App Development
AR apps tend to come in two forms. There are marker-based apps which are based on image recognition. Then there are location-based AR apps, which rely on GPS information instead.
We’re going to touch on some tools to help you build augmented reality apps, no matter which configuration you’re using.
Considering they’re one of the largest tech companies on Earth, it’s not surprising that Google’s AR toolkit is one of the best and most popular out there.
Google’s ARCore is designed to be intuitive and easy to use by absolutely everybody. It works with absolutely every AR environment. This means you won’t have to switch back and forth to create iOS and Android AR apps.
It’s also no surprise that Apple’s own AR development environment is also one of the best out there. Apple’s ARKit is one of the smoothest functioning, most reliable AR tool kits out there.
ARKit also offers some of the most advanced AR features currently available. Developers can use ARKit to create multi-user AR environments, as well as AR sessions that can be saved and resumed at a later date.
These features are likely to be important in AR games. They could also be implemented for online interactions, hinting at a more immersive Internet in the very near future.
Vuforia is a powerful augmented reality SDK that takes care of many of the most difficult aspects of AR development for you.
- 2D and 3D object recognition
- Text recognition
- Video playback
- Marker recognition
- Cloud recognition
- Virtual buttons
Vuforia’s SDK is even free to use. It just has limited functionality and watermarks. It should still give you an idea of what the SDK is capable of.
Kudan is another popular AR development tool. It features limited functionality but it has other things going for it.
Kudan is restricted to iOS and Android platforms. It makes up for this limitation with a particularly low memory imprint. This makes AR apps developed with Kudan particularly light and fast.
Kudan is also available in both free and paid versions. The free version also features watermarks, however, similar to Vuforia.
One of the best things about AR catching on is the widespread availability of powerful, easy-to-use AR development tools. Many of them are even free, at least to try.
EasyAR offers a free trial version, like the other augmented reality app builders we’ve mentioned. Many of its best features are only available in the paid version, however. But the cloud recognition and unlimited recognition queries available in the free version is worthy of inclusion on this list, alone.
If you’re looking for an AR development tool that does it all, Wikitude is the solution for you. Wikitude’s SLAM technology makes custom mapping and displaying virtual objects a snap.
Built-in geolocation support makes adding location-based services to your AR apps virtually instantaneous, as well. Finally, extensive tracking functions mean virtual objects are displayed even when the camera loses track of a marker.
As you can see, there are a ton of great AR development tools out there. It’s getting easier and easier to build augmented reality tools on a budget. Get started on yours today, before your competition does!
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