When we think of Augmented Reality (AR), most people assume that we need an AR-supported device (headset) or an iPhone with ARKit. With changing time, AR has evolved and managed to make its way into a wide range of devices. Taking this into consideration, Google is planning to make this functionality universal.
Google is planning to bring AR to millions of Android and iOS devices with an AR-enabled web browser. The company has unveiled a WebAR prototype called the Article. It’s a 3D model viewer that works with all web browsers for both desktop and mobile devices.
On desktops, the users can interact with the article (virtual astronaut) by spinning it with the mouse pointer, scrolling to zoom in and zoom out While in mobile devices, it can be done by finger gestures like pinching with two fingers to zoom and rotating the article using tap and drag gesture.
The AR functionality comes to picture when the Article is loaded on an AR-capable browser and device, which comes with an AR button that appears in the bottom right corner. Tapping the button activates the device’s camera and a rotating circle appears on the screen which helps the users to place the 3D object. These AR models are user interactive which enables the users to reposition the object by dragging, tapping and rotating making it easy for the users to learn.
Enabling AR on mobile devices and desktops would help in the further exploration of AR’s potential. It has applications that include shopping, entertainment, education etc. For instance, imagine searching for something on an e-commerce website and quickly see how it would look in your room. How cool would that be? WebAR will be out on devices soon.