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Apple is quietly building the business case for augmented reality

Apple is quietly building the business case for augmented reality

Apple has introduced new AR features that should help the company lead to the adoption of more mainstream technologies.

Apple has quietly introduced new AR features that should help the company promote the adoption of more mass technologies, especially for retailers, animation houses and educators, and you can access them using QuickLook.

What does the apple do

Apple’s QuickLook supports 3D models that use the USDZ file format created by the company in collaboration with Pixar. This works in the apps you use every day, including Safari, Messages, Mail, Finder, and more, so you don’t need an extra app to run AR experiences.

When you touch one of these 3D models, the Apple ARKit renders it as realistic as possible, with lighting and shadows. You can move the object, examine it from different angles and more.

What’s new is that Apple is now adding Apple Pay support to this feature, which means you can browse an item in the virtual space and then pay for it if you want.

The growing business case for AR

This is not limited to Apple Pay, as the support comes in the form of a button that developers can customize for different uses. For example, an educator might use that button to direct you to additional associated multimedia content, while a component provider might want to start a customer support chat, for example.

The idea is that you can share an AR preview of an article in the body of a Messages chat, an email, online, in an app, or anywhere else on USDZ-supported Apple platforms.

These new features were previewed at WWDC 2019, TechCrunch reported, but are now activated by major retailers, including Home Depot, Wayfair, 1-800 Flowers and Bang & Olufsen.

The animators seem excited

Privately, in a recent conversation with an animation studio that creates jobs for corporate clients and game developers, I learned that the file format is also compatible with key applications such as Maya. The developers were delighted because it allows them to preview the objects they are working with in more or less real time; They also suggested that we see more AR actions.

Support for spatial audio is also under development.

This means that the virtual objects you’re working with can make sounds, and it also means that the spatial sound on your Mac computers (look at it, 16-inch MacBook Pro!) Can make the sound of the object appear to come from where you choose. put it in your room

What problems does this solve?

We know that Apple is great in AR, but to do great things is not just about technology. It also requires viable business models.

This means that if the company wants AR to get out of specific use cases and the main hobbyists, Apple knows that it needs to allow viable businesses to grow.

That is what this new feature should accomplish. By doing so, it should help RAs be used more widely in transactions and can help generate new opportunities for new products and services.

Retailers are already very interested in RA, and by making it possible to share high-quality AR assets on their platforms and by adding features (such as «Buy Now» buttons together), Apple is helping to boost demand.

It bears little resemblance to the founding years of self-publishing.

We will know that the plan works when the RA is as common as the pizza delivery flyers. That’s certainly what Apple Vice President Eddy Cue seems to be hoping for, saying he believes AR will be a «mass experience» we use every day.

It’s about evolution.

Apple CEO Tim Cook predicted this in 2017: «Think of 2008 when the App Store went live,» he said. «There was an initial round of requests, and people looked at them and said, ‘It’s nothing; mobile applications will not take off. ‘

Today we use applications for almost anything. «RA is like that,» Cook said.

Next: RA for the rest of us

There is another possible reason why Apple pays so much attention to technology and it is speculation about the Apple glasses it should be working on.

While the company can make them quite special and weave a lot of magic on its own, it also knows that it needs to train developers to improve its core features. It should also excite developers, consumers and business users about what can be done.

One way to do this is to make sure that the AR is already widely used before the company introduces such a product. Another thing is to make sure that AR business ideas can be turned into profitable realities by providing support for platform-based opportunities, which I believe it is.

What is your company doing to explore this opportunity?