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Augmented Reality: Tesco Try New Smartphone Technology

Tesco is the latest big name brand looking to utilise augmented reality.

The supermarket chain is using the 3D webcam technology that appears on many smartphones in a bid to save shop space and offer more interactive elements to customers.

The move will see a number of larger Tesco consumer good products no longer stored physically on shop floors.

Instead shoppers will simply have to hold up their Smartphones to a product key in order to generate 3D projections of particular products, as well as a whole host of additional product information.

Augmented reality is a combination of real and virtual, presented in an interactive, real time way.

Augmented Reality Apps

The number of AR capable apps on offer has already risen dramatically and have had a massive boost with the surge in AR capable smartphones on the market.

When it comes to smartphones another example is the Google Mobile App Goggles function, which lets you take a photo, for example of a book cover, from your phone and search for it via Google.

But perhaps the best known AR is Layar, which as their website boasts is a ‘beautiful, fun, augmented reality app that shows you things you can’t see.’ It is available for both iPhone and Android at:

Juniper Research claims that nearly 1.4 billion annual downloads of AR apps worldwide is likely by 2015, up from just over 11 million last year.

Annual revenues generated by mobile AR applications and services are expected to approach $1.5 billion by 2015, up from less than $2 million in 2010.

AR is now used in games, social networking, education, lifestyle and a number of personal healthcare apps. It is likely to become big business in the coming years as technology develops even further to incorporate this interesting technology.