Augmented reality is available and affordable to businesses

Published:  31 October, 2016

Augmented reality has been big news across the gaming world in recent months and there are plenty of large corporations talking about how they’re going to use it. But Exhibit Interactive is making it available and affordable to businesses.

The fresh thinking, technology-focused company is applying its decades of insight in the exhibitions sector to help businesses use augmented reality to engage and immerse their customers – giving a never-seen-before, in-depth appreciation of their products.

Augmented reality is technology which can overlay computer generated scenarios onto a live view of the real world. So, with a focus on making things as simple and accessible as possible, Exhibit Interactive has developed a free to download app called ‘Captivate’. Once that’s on your smartphone or tablet, all you need is the ‘WOW!’ box. This too is free to download from the company’s website. Print it out and away you go. An augmented image will appear before your very eyes.

Of course, this is just a sample, but all Exhibit Interactive needs from any business wanting to bring its products to life in a virtual world, is a CAD drawing. If there isn’t one, Exhibit Interactive can help with that. It then models it and adapts it for augmented reality, ready to be shown to potential customers, using the ‘Captivate’ app.

Joe Ashton, director at Exhibit Interactive, said: “One of the things I always struggle to accept with new technologies is how they seem to be so unobtainable or require heavy investment. That simply isn’t the case for augmented reality. At Exhibit Interactive we have a skilled CAD team and we have the right software, so we really can make augmented reality accessible to any business.”

The downloadable ‘WOW’ box features an operating water valve on one side, flip it over and you can watch a showreel about augmented reality in use at an exhibition – illustrating for example, how rooms in a building can be kitted out with underfloor heating.

Mr Ashton continued: “We appreciate water valves don’t float everyone’s boat, but this is just our starting point to demonstrate what’s possible. We’re currently working on different models to appeal to a wider range of industry sectors.”

Exhibit Interactive is offering three different applications for augmented reality:

  • Desktop augmented reality - using a printed marker, camera and screen. Users hold a printed image in their hands and show this to a camera located by a large TV screen. The camera recognises the printed image and augments a 3D computer generated object onto the screen, giving the impression that the person is holding the actual object. This object could be a product and can also show moving parts.
  • Presentation augmented reality - a printed image is placed on a meeting table allowing the product to appear to be floating in mid air. It acts as a point of reference while attendees discuss the benefits of the product and works particularly well for products which haven’t been produced yet or that are too big to be transported. Presentation augmented reality can also be used on a smartphone - using a live feed from the smartphone and an augmented reality app, presenters can show their audience a printed presentation via the live camera and make it come alive with CAD products, audio and video clips.
  • Tablet and smartphone augmented reality - holding the device in their hands users can see products come to life by using the live feed from the camera.

For more information on Exhibit Interactive visit www.exhibitinteractive.co.uk.

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