The wearable tech industry is currently experiencing something of a boom, and even though this week’s headlines have been dominated by the news of Google’s smartwatch endeavors with Android Wear, its Project Glass face-worn computer still generates plenty of interest. Currently in beta, many developers have the Explorer Edition in their possession, with Google hoping that they can go ahead and create some great apps, and one company, Layar, has showcased a neat-looking augmented reality Glassware app that can scan magazines, recognize adverts, and subsequently relay relevant information to the user.
Advertising is such a powerful weapon, particularly in the modern Digital Age, and Layar’s solution could serve as a key peddler of promotional services, product-based information, and location-related points of interest.
The way it operates is fairly standard fare, using the device’s camera to act upon the command “OK Glass, scan this.” The app then uses its image recognition technology to throw up info based upon the subject matter, and this can take the form of videos, slideshows, images, and so forth. Results are displayed on the rolling timeline along the side of the user interface, although in order for the app to run smoothly, Layar does note that users must side-load the app rather than taking the traditional installation path.
A further location-based element, which Layar likes to call “Geo Layers,” operates much like your traditional augmented reality service, and is very similar to the kind you might already find on pre-existing smartphones and tablets. Depending on where you happen to be, the app will show you all kinds of information related to what you’re looking at, offering real-time layered information as you glance at different points of interest.
The idea that Glass could facilitate guided tours is not exactly new, but what Layar appears to be doing with the technology is nonetheless interesting, and points perhaps to the kind of application that we’ll need to see more of if Glass is to be viable as a consumer product, rather than just a gadget to suit the ends of enterprise.
A video demonstration, which runs through Layar’s various augmented reality features for Glass, is embedded below:
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