Augmented reality browsers are becoming a popular way for companies to show off their programming aptitude. With smart phones and mobile devices becoming capable of more advanced application, augmented reality technology has been pegged as the most promising advancement to come to the realm of mobile technology. AR may not be anything new, but the technology has garnered little attention in the past due to its complex nature and the overall lack of hardware able to support it. Now, however, AR is taking up most of the limelight when it comes to mobile technology.
Given the relative inexperience most companies have with AR, quite a few applications being released to smart phones border on the edge of novelty. There are, however, several promising endeavors underway to present mobile users with a more practical use of the technology. Wikitude is one of the initiatives.
Wikitude is an augmented reality browser which overlays a bevy of virtual information over the real world. While the practicality of an AR browser is somewhat novelty in and of itself, Wikitude has more than one incarnation. Wikitude Drive has recently been released for the iPhone, Android and Symbian platforms and is being hailed as the most comprehensive and advanced navigation system to date.
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Wikitude Drive transforms a smart phone into a GPS navigation system. Using the phone’s camera the application projects directions and other travel information on the screen. Billed as the world’s first AR navigation system for smart phones, Drive may set the standard for future forays into the field of AR browsing.