Tag Archives: augmented reality

Why Amazon’s use of self-driving technology would be a game changer

Self-driving vehicles have yet to hit the road in a major way, but Amazon already is exploring the technology’s potential to change how your packages are delivered.

Amazon is the nation’s largest online retailer, and its decisions not only turn heads but influence the entire retail and shipping industries, analysts say. That means any foray into the self-driving arena – whether as a developer or customer – could have a significant effect on the technology’s adoption.

Amazon has assigned a dozen employees to determine how it can use the technology as part of its business, the Wall Street Journal reported Monday. It’s unclear what shape Amazon’s efforts will take or how far along they might be, although the company has no plans to create its own vehicles, according to the report.

Nevertheless, the Amazon group offers an early indication that big companies are preparing for the technology’s impact.

Transportation experts anticipate that self-driving cars will fundamentally alter the way people get around and the way companies ship goods, changes that stand to disrupt entire industries and leave millions of professional drivers without jobs. The forthcoming shift has attracted the money and attention of the biggest names in the technology and automotive industries, including Apple, Uber, Google, Ford, General Motors and Tesla, among others.

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In particular, the technology could make long-haul shipping cheaper and faster because, unlike human drivers, machines do not command a salary or require down time. That would be important to Amazon, whose shipping costs continue to climb as the company sells more products and ships them faster, according to its annual report. Amazon even invested in its own fleet of trucks in December 2015 to give the company greater control over distribution.

If Amazon adopts self-driving technology, it may push others to do the same.

“When Amazon sneezes, everyone wakes up,” said Satish Jindel, president of SJ Consulting Group, a transportation and logistics advisory firm.

The company said it shipped more than 1 billion items during the 2016 holiday season.

 

An Amazon spokeswoman declined a request for an interview, citing a “long-standing practice of not commenting on rumors and speculation.” The company’s chief executive, Jeffrey P. Bezos, owns The Washington Post.

Amazon has become something of a pioneer in home delivery, in part by setting the standard for how quickly purchases arrive on your doorstep. The company has begun using aerial drones in an effort to deliver goods more quickly, completing its first successful flight to a customer in the United Kingdom in December. Like self-driving vehicles, drones will need to overcome regulatory hurdles before they’re widely deployed.

In its warehouses, Amazon has used thousands of robots that pull items from shelves and pack them. Last summer, Deutsche Bank analysts found the robots reduced the time to fulfill an order from more than an hour to 15 minutes, according to business news site Quartz. They also saved Amazon about $22 million per warehouse. Amazon acquired Kiva, the company that makes the robots, in 2012 for $775 million.

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Source:

http://www.denverpost.com/2017/04/26/amazon-self-driving-delivery/

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The smartphone is eventually going to die — this is Mark Zuckerberg’s crazy vision for what comes next

At this week’s Facebook F8 conference in San Jose, Mark Zuckerberg doubled down on his crazy ambitious 10-year plan for the company, first revealed in April 2016.

Basically, Zuckerberg’s uses this roadmap to demonstrate Facebook’s three-stage game plan in action: First, you take the time to develop a neat cutting-edge technology. Then you build a product based on it. Then you turn it into an ecosystem where developers and outside companies can use that technology to build their own businesses.

When Zuckerberg first announced this plan last year, it was big on vision, but short on specifics.

On Facebook’s planet of 2026, the entire world has internet access — with many people likely getting it through Internet.org, Facebook’s connectivity arm. Zuckerberg reiterated this week that the company is working on smart glasses that look like your normal everyday Warby Parkers. And underpinning all of this, Facebook is promising artificial intelligence good enough that we can talk to computers as easily as chatting with humans.

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A world without screens

For science-fiction lovers, the world Facebook is starting to build is very cool and insanely ambitious. Instead of smartphones, tablets, TVs, or anything else with a screen, all our computing is projected straight into our eyes as we type with our brains.

A mixed-reality world is exciting for society and for Facebook shareholders. But it also opens the door to some crazy future scenarios, where Facebook, or some other tech company, intermediates everything you see, hear, and, maybe even, think. And as we ponder the implications of that kind of future, consider how fast we’ve already progressed on Zuckerberg’s timeline.

We’re now one year closer to Facebook’s vision for 2026. And things are slowly, but surely, starting to come together, as the social network’s plans for virtual and augmented reality, universal internet connectivity, and artificial intelligence start to slowly move from fantasy into reality.

In fact, Michael Abrash, the chief scientist of Facebook-owned Oculus Research, said this week that we could be just 5 years away from a point where augmented reality glasses become good enough to go mainstream. And Facebook is now developing technology that lets you “type” with your brain, meaning you’d type, point, and click by literally thinking at your smart glasses. Facebook is giving us a glimpse of this with the Camera Effects platform, making your phone into an AR device.

Fries with that?

The potential here is tremendous. Remember that Facebook’s mission is all about sharing, and this kind of virtual, ubiquitous ” teleportation ” and interaction is an immensely powerful means to that end.

This week, Oculus unveiled “Facebook Spaces,” a “social VR” app that lets denizens of virtual reality hang out with each other, even if some people are in the real world and some people have a headset strapped on. It’s slightly creepy, but it’s a sign of the way that Facebook sees you and your friends spending time together in the future. 

And if you’re wearing those glasses, there’s no guarantee that the person who’s taking your McDonald’s order is a human, after all. Imagine a virtual avatar sitting at the cash register, projected straight into your eyeballs, and taking your order. With Facebook announcing its plans to revamp its Messenger platform with AI features that also make it more business-friendly, the virtual fast-food cashier is not such a far-fetched scenario.

Sure, Facebook Messenger chatbots have struggled to gain widespread acceptance since they were introduced a year ago. But as demonstrated with Microsoft’s Xiaoice and even the Tay disaster, we’re inching towards more human-like systems that you can just talk to. And if Facebook’s crazy plan to let you “hear” with your skin plays out, they can talk to you while you’re wearing those glasses. And again, you’ll be able to reply with just a thought.

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Source:

http://www.businessinsider.com/facebook-f8-mark-zuckerberg-augmented-reality-2026-2017-4

Apple’s Augmented Reality Plans May Include iPhone 8 Smart Connector for Special Glasses

Apple’s iPhone 8 will reportedly include an iPad Pro-like smart connector that may be the link up for augmented reality and virtual reality headsets. The report is tenuous, but the idea that Apple is ready to introduce its augmented reality platform this fall is interesting.

Word of Apple’s plan comes courtesy of the Israeli website The Verifier saying the smart connector will also be used for charging, sort of like MagSafe for the iPhone. Assuming they’re right, Apple will use the iPhone’s smart connector right away for more than it’s done with the iPad Pro. Currently, the only accessory taking advantage of the iPad’s smart connector is the Smart Keyboard cover.

It’s no secret Apple is exploring augmented reality, which overlays data, graphics, and other content onto whatever users are looking at. Google’s first public attempt at grabbing the augmented reality market was Google Glass—high tech eye glasses that projected information only the wearer could see.

Google Glass never amounted to more than a public exploration of what’s possible with augmented reality technology in part because convincing people to wear glasses who don’t need them is a hard sell. Apple will likely use the iPhone as its augmented reality platform, just as Facebook just announced it’s doing.

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Using smartphones with augmented reality makes sense because users won’t have to buy more equipment to carry around, and the built-in cameras can handle the image and video capture necessary while the phone processors handle the real time overlay of data, all of which displays on the built-in screen.

Relying on smartphones means users need their phone in hand to experience augmented reality, which they currently do when playing Pokémon GO—a popular augmented reality game that sends players on hunts in the real world to capture virtual characters.

Smartphones and Augmented Reality

If Apple wants to make augmented reality feel more immersive, adding in some sort of glasses is the most logical path to take. Glasses as an accessory instead of a requirement means more iPhone owners can try augmented reality without spending extra money, and those who want a deeper experience can buy Apple’s special glasses.

Connecting the glasses to a smart port, however, seems clunky and awkward since there’ll be an extra cable running from the glasses to your iPhone. Instead, Apple could use the smart connector to charge its glasses and go with Bluetooth when they’re in use.

That said, there isn’t much right now to back up the idea of augmented reality glasses for the iPhone 8 yet. The Verifier doesn’t have a history with insider sources, and there aren’t any independent reports echoing what they’re saying.

Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman, for example, has a well documented track record with Apple product leaks, and his report from earlier this week has no mention of the smart connector or augmented reality glasses. Until more sources back up this report we’re remaining skeptical.

Source:

https://www.macobserver.com/news/iphone-8-augmented-reality-smart-connector/

Imagining the Retail Store of the Future

LONDON — What will the store of the future look like? Will we be served by fleets of gleaming robots, using built-in facial recognition technology to adjust each sales pitch to a person’s current mood or past spending preferences? Will there be voice-activated personal assistants, downloading the availability, color and fit of any and every garment to your smartphone? Three-D printing stations? No checkout counters when you leave? Could there even be floating, holographic product displays on the shop floor that change when a customer walks by?

Perhaps shoppers will make all their purchases from their own home, using virtual fitting rooms via virtual reality headsets. Drones will then drop deliveries in the backyard or on the front steps.

As fanciful as these innovations may sound, none are hypothetical. All exist, are being tested and could be rolled out in as little as a decade. But is this the sort of shopping experience that customers really want?

Scores of leading retailers and fashion brands increasingly say no. And in an ever-more-volatile and unpredictable shopping environment, where long-term survival is dictated by anticipating and catering to consumers’ desires (often before they themselves even know what they want), the race to find out how and where people will do their spending has started to heat up.

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On Wednesday, for example, Farfetch — the global online marketplace for independent luxury boutiques — held a daylong event at the Design Museum in London. There, in front of 200 fashion industry insiders and partners, José Neves, the founder of Farfetch, unveiled “The Store of the Future,” a suite of new technologies developed by his company to help brands and boutiques bridge the worlds of online and offline.

Nevertheless, in a telephone call last week, Mr. Neves said: “I am a huge believer in physical stores. They are not going to vanish and will stay at the center of the seismic retail revolution that is only just getting started.”

A corresponding report released by Bain & Company this week suggests that he might be right; although 70 percent of high-end purchases are influenced by online interactions, the consultancy maintains that stores will continue to play a critical role, with 75 percent of sales still occurring in a physical location by 2025.

What may change, however, is a store’s primary purpose. Forget e-commerce, or bricks and mortar, or even omnichannel sales; according to Mr. Neves, the new retail era is one anchored in “augmented retail,” a blend of the digital and physical allowing a shopper to shift seamlessly between the two realms.

“Customers don’t wake up and think, I will be online this morning or offline later; we are rarely purely one or the other anymore and tend to jump constantly between two worlds without noticing,” Mr. Neves said. “Harnessing this behavior is a major challenge for retailers and brands and why we are doing this event. It is in our interests to give our partners firsthand access to information about changing behaviors and new technology, so everyone is ‘future-proofed’ as to what might come next.”

Holition is an augmented-reality consultancy and software provider based in London that has worked with some well-known retail brands. Last fall it worked with the British cosmetics company Charlotte Tilbury on a “magic mirror” concept, a virtual makeup selling tool that allows users to try on different looks that are digitally superimposed onto their faces in 40 seconds. They can then send the selection of photos to their email address, ready to be referred to later or shared socially. And they then can buy products, available from glamorous makeup artists milling around nearby.

“Technology is still often a barrier in the retail place, with smartphones, iPads and screens getting in the way of what the consumer wants to see, touch and feel 80 percent of the time,” said Jonathan Chippindale, Holition’s chief executive.

“The holy grail now for retailers is creating digital empathy. No one can really guess what the future will look like. But those who are using technology and data to create bespoke shopping experiences that recognize every person is different, and with different needs, are more likely to come out on top.”

Tom Chapman, a founder of MatchesFashion.com, agreed. It was originally a bricks and mortar boutique; now 95 percent of the British fashion retailer’s sales — which hit 204 million pounds (about $253 million) in 2016 — are online. But Mr. Chapman said boutiques and physical events remained vital “marketing opportunities,” with a more specialized inventory selection and the opportunity for customers to do more than buy merchandise; for example, the MatchesFashion.com “In Residence” series offers talks, film screenings and designer meet-and-greets, along with social media lessons, exercise classes and floristry sessions.

“You need to be accessible to your customer wherever she wants to find you,” Mr. Chapman said, “and we have seen that a sizable proportion want human interaction and access that goes far beyond a credit card transaction.”

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Apple Will Soon Join Facebook in the AR Online Platform Video War

At the moment augmented reality is still a clunky, phone-in-front-of-your-face experience, but today Facebook promised to transform that experience when it announced a new AR platform. And you can be sure that quite a few folks at Apple were watching with great interest the live stream of the F8 developers conference in San Jose, California, where the new platform was introduced with plenty of striking visual aids.

 

Onstage at the conference, Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg and some of his top aides energetically kicked off what is sure to be a new platform war—one that will soon be joined by Apple and plenty of other competitors.

“This space will get crowded though, and I expect both Apple and Google to also bring these functionalities to their camera apps and offer developers the chance to build AR experiences on their platforms as well,” Creative Strategies analyst Ben Bajarin told Fast Company in an email.

Facebook made a strategic decision to be the first tech giant to launch an AR platform when the hardware and technology is still in its nascent stage. In Facebook’s version of AR, a user will hold their phone in front of their face and watch as all kinds of moving imagery and information is superimposed over the picture of the real world seen by the camera. Yep, kinda like Pokémon Go.

Facebook said it will provide developers with precise location, object recognition, and 3D effects tools they need to start building their own custom AR experiences. That could mean anything from AR games to a retailer placing a data card over a product in front of the camera.

“Facebook is smart to give developers the tools to build AR experiences and give those tools to a wider developer community,” Bajarin says. “They are approaching this as a true platform play, which is smart.”

It seems likely that Apple will have to weigh in with its own AR platform sooner or later—I’m guessing sooner. Two media outlets have already reported that Apple is working on prototypes of some kind of AR glasses. This is unsurprising; the company has likely been working on glasses for a couple of years. The press reports say the company already has “hundreds” of engineers working on its own AR effort.

Apple isn’t known for being first in emerging technologies, preferring to hang back and drop in when it knows it can deliver a product or service better than everybody else. Entering the market with a cool-looking and high-functioning set of AR glasses would be one way to outshine the competing platforms. But Apple may not be able to wait until the core technologies needed for such glasses become available at mass market levels.

 

In the near term, Apple might begin adding new camera technology to the iPhone that can support AR apps, both its own and those from third-party developers. Fast Company previously reported that Apple will source 3D camera technology from Lumentum for its 10th anniversary iPhone 8, which will likely be announced this fall.

Facebook’s AR announcement today may end up serving as the ideal opening act for Apple, says Technalysis Research president Bob O’Donnell. Facebook’s experience in its current form is built to work with the camera on the user’s phone, he says. “So Facebook announces a 2D Snapchat-like experience with photo filters and calls it AR.” Facebook will have introduced the AR concept to a mass audience with an experience that Apple can best by leveraging a true 3D camera in the next iPhone (or, possibly, with the dual cameras in the iPhone 7 Plus), says O’Donnell.

Zuckerberg may also have lowered expectations around AR—which, after all the overly hyped Magic Leap coverage, has led many people to anticipate a headset-wearable experience. “So when Apple announces an AR experience that works on the phone instead of an AR headset, it won’t be as much of a disappointment,” O’Donnell says.

Creative Strategies’ Bajarin believes that Facebook and Google are more capable than Apple at delivering cloud-based augmented reality content from the cloud, which could be a big advantage. He also believes Facebook and Google have the edge in the machine learning needed to help identify objects and people in the real world, a key function in AR apps. And let’s not forget Microsoft, which arguably has more experience in the space than anyone, after having developed the first major AR headset with the HoloLens.

Apple’s advantage lies in its ability to control far more of the hardware and software stack underpinning the AR experience—the apps, the phone, and the OS. Apple may begin building AR features deep in iOS, so that it could begin to “augment” lots of different aspects of the phone experience, like Siri does. By building AR into the OS, Apple might enable a richer experience that’s optimized for the iPhone.

It’s even possible that Apple could begin talking about its AR strategy as soon as its upcoming developer conference, WWDC, in June. Since Apple likely wants to speak to developers en masse and in person about what could become a major new platform, it may choose to at least start the conversation, as opposed to waiting until next year’s conference.

If it does, it will likely lay out a wade-into-the-water approach that will look something like what Facebook announced today. That is, the AR experience will be seen through the display of an iPhone, not through a face wearable. But that might be just the thing to get developers and consumers used to the concept, without getting too exotic with the hardware.

 

Whatever the shape of the product, Apple will try to make a grand entrance into the AR market. It won’t be first in, so it will have to infuse the technology with simplicity, style, and a wow factor that turns consumers on and makes the competing platforms seem inferior.

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Source:

https://www.fastcompany.com/40409497/apple-will-soon-join-the-ar-platform-war-that-facebook-just-started

Facebook launches a camera platform for developers to push augmented reality forward

Facebook today announced a platform for developers to build new experiences into its in-app cameras, saying it would bring augmented reality into the mainstream and position Facebook to reap the majority of the benefits. Speaking on stage at Facebook’s F8 developer conference, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said that AR would be the next major platform for computing. A closed beta that opens today will let developers begin experimenting with photo and video filters, games, art projects, and more.

In a demonstration, Zuckerberg showed a variety of dazzling camera effects. Swiping to the stories camera that Facebook introduced last month, users will soon find thousands of augmented reality effects, he said. These go beyond the art frames and face filters of today to include three-dimensional text and images. In one demo, giant puffy words reading “It’s feeding time” rose out of a breakfast table, where a series of sharks swam around a cereal bowl.

In another demo, Facebook’s camera turned a two-dimensional photo into a 3D A mundane picture of an office with chairs transformed in several ways: appearing to fill up with water, or bouncy balls, and even Skittles. “Because the future is delicious,” Zuckerberg said. (Hello advertisers!) The camera platform will launch with just six platforms, Zuckerberg told Recode.

Facebook’s camera will use object recognition to suggest effects based on the object. Tap on a coffee cup, for example, and you’ll be able to add steam. Or tap a wine bottle and add a card showing the vintage, and presumably, a link to buy it yourself. “Some of these effects are going to be fun,” Zuckerberg said. “Others are going to be useful.”

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The addition of face filters and 3D effects into camera apps was pioneered by Snapchat, which Facebook has spent the past year disassembling and integrating into its suite of apps. Just today, Snapchat introduced world lenses, which project similar 3D images into the world around you.

Zuckerberg acknowledged Facebook had been somewhat late to the AR party. But he said the company’s object recognition and machine learning technology would give it an advantage over its rivals. “Even though we were a little slow to add cameras to all our apps, I’m confident that now we’re going to push this augmented reality camera forward,” he said.

Source:

http://www.theverge.com/2017/4/18/15343008/facebook-camera-platform-augmented-reality-ar

Virtual diamonds and Dior Eyes: Could augmented reality be about to revolutionise fashion retail?

Virtual and augmented reality is about much more than just gaming.  It’s a trend that’s expected to grow rapidly and consume almost every part of our physical lives, including fashion.

From notebooks to calendars, alarm clocks and cameras, objects that were once integral have all but disappeared into the digital landscape. Could our wardrobes be about to follow suit?

It has even been suggested that technology could become so advanced and bizarre that we end up renting virtual clothes and jewelry for our augmented reality worlds.

“All those things we thought essential materially, disappeared into the virtual environment,” Jody Medich, director of design at Singularity University told WIRED Retail.

“They have all gone into the screen – but in the future, we are going to be looking through that screen.”

Medich believes that augmented reality will be ubiquitous in just five years through our phones, headsets, or AR contact lenses and while that might sound a little hasty to some of you, it’s more realistic than you might think. 

As early as 2014, VR was making huge waves in the fashion world when London Fashion Week offered users a front-row view of the catwalk with a 360 degree stream. More recently, Balenciaga’s Autumn Winter 2016 show was broadcast in virtual reality, while Hussein Chalayan released a panoramic video of his show; heck even Dior has its own VR headset.    

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“This technology will be ubiquitous – it won’t affect little bits of our lives, it’s going to affect every aspect of our lives. All those activities we do on our second screens are going to change in a radical way,” says Medich.

“Instead of looking into a screen, we will be looking through the screen. When we do that, magical things will happen.”

People love the convenience of online shopping but it’s difficult to know exactly what you’re getting or how well it’s going to fit. Could AR be the solution?

Medich certainly seems to think so, referencing furniture retailer Wayfair, which used Google’s Tango technology to build an app that can measure your environment. 

“Tango knows the dimensions and can see the decor of my space, then suggest what types of end tables I will want. Then I can just put it there and see what it looks like.”

Imagine this but in a virtual retail world where you can be matched with products specific to your shape and personal style or where your bedroom becomes a fitting room and builds outfits based on exactly what’s in your wardrobe.

Why stop there? What about personal AI stylists or the ability to rent high-end clothing and jewellery that can only be viewed through AR lenses? If Merdich is right, the accessibility of luxury fashion could soon be available to every consumer.

Of course, how and to what extent the medium will impact the fashion industry is yet to be determined but nonetheless it comes with endless possibilities. 

 

Source:

http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/fashion/augmented-reality-virtual-reality-fashion-retail-a7425076.html

Sephora again makes over Virtual Artist augmented reality app

Dive Brief:

  • Beauty retailer Sephora has launched new augmented reality-based features for its Virtual Artist application on Apple’s iOS, including an eyeshadow virtual try-on feature, an Expert Looks preview feature and three new virtual tutorials for brows, contouring and highlighting.

 

  • The Sephora Virtual Artist Eyeshadow Try On feature gives users to access to thousands of shades by color, brand and finish, including each individual shade or an entire palette. Users can click on up to three shades to try them on the eyelid, crease and outer corner, and instantly determine their favorite combinations.

 

  • The Expert Looks allows users to pick from seven different on-trend looks created by Sephora’s experts, including Bright Lip & Cheek, Smoky Eye and Cut Crease, and have any of these instantly overlaid onto their own faces with a 3-D live view. The Virtual Artist Tutorials provide step-by-step DIY virtual training for creating trendy looks. The three new tutorials include Brows 3-Ways, Contouring, and Highlighting. Each step is customized to and animated on the user’s own face using 3D Live view. 
 

Dive Insight:

Sephora continues to be one of the most aggressive companies among beauty brands (and retailers in general) in its readiness to add new features to its mobile app. The retailer has added to its list of Virtual Artist offerings multiple times within the last year, and has been busily extending these capabilities to its chatbot on Facebook Messenger as well. It seems like the company is intent on enabling in its mobile app just about everything you might do at the beauty counter in a Sephora store.

Augmented reality technology is what make much of that possible. It allows Sephora customers to “try on” make up and cosmetics they same way they might try them on on a store by matching it with their facial type or features, or even overlaying it on images of their own faces. It’s a mobile app tool that is not just useful for beauty brands either — Gap said at CES 2017 in January that it’s testing a DressingRoom app that would use the same sort of augmented reality technology to allow customers to virtually try on clothes.

Retailers that thrive on try-on traffic — people visiting their brick-and-mortar stores because they want to try something on in person before buying — have some interesting decisions to make about how far they want to go with enabling these realistic try-on capabilities via mobile and social media. Could the richly-featured apps keep people away from stores and addition selling opportunities for the retailers, or could the apps drive them to buy more from retailers who they feel are serving them well?

Sephora seems to be pretty invested in the latter outcome, and doing everything it can to make it happen. It’s in a very competitive space, as fellow beauty retailer Ulta Beauty is succeeding on the e-commerce front while also continuing to open new stores. Macy’s also appears to be working harder to leverage Bluemercury, the beauty chain it acquired in 2015. With beauty being such a battleground, Sephora will need to keep its Virtual Artist well-armed.

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Source:

http://www.retaildive.com/news/sephora-again-makes-over-virtual-artist-augmented-reality-app/437993/

Here’s How Apple Could Bring Augmented Reality to the iPhone

Apple is ramping up its plans to pursue augmented reality, according to a new Bloomberg report, which provides some detail on how the company may incorporate the technology into the iPhone.

The Cupertino, Calif.-based company is said to be exploring features that would allow iPhone owners to change the depth of photographs taken with the phone’s camera after they’ve been captured. Another potential implementation would let users isolate a specific object in an image, such as a person’s head, and tilt it 180 degrees, the report says. Apple is also developing a feature that would make it possible to overlay virtual effects and objects onto a photo, similar to Snapchat.

The report cautions that Apple may not roll out these features, but that the company has iPhone camera engineers working on them. Apple’s iPhone 7 Plus has two cameras, one specifically tailored for better zooming, which allows the phone to shoot images that sharpen a subject against a slightly blurred background.

Apple has reportedly assembled a team of experts specializing in augmented reality technology, camera sensors, 3D video production, and wearable tech hardware. This group reportedly includes Mike Rockwell, who previously ran the hardware and new technologies team at Dolby, as well as Cody White, who was formerly a lead engineer for Amazon’s Lumberyard VR platform. Last year, The Financial Times also reported that Apple was building a secret team dedicated to developing virtual and augmented reality products.

The iPhone maker is also said to be working on a pair of augmented reality glasses, as Bloomberg previously reported. This new headset combined with the upcoming iPhone camera features could put Apple in direct competition with Snap Inc., which released its first pair of glasses in September.

Apple CEO Tim Cook has previously said that augmented reality is an area of interest for the company, although he hasn’t discussed plans for future products. “I think AR is extremely interesting and sort of a core technology,” Cook told The Washington Post in August. “So, yes, it’s something we’re doing a lot of things on behind that curtain we talked about.”

Source:

http://time.com/4706491/apple-iphone-ar-rumors/