Understanding Augmented Reality

A type of technology that allow digital images and information to be displayed onto the physical environment. Augmented reality (AR) is an enhances version of the real physical world that is achieved through the use of digital visual element, sound or other sensory stimuli and delivered via technology

It is a growing trend among companies involved in mobile computing and business application in particular.


The technical means it uses include Multimedia, 3D-Modeling, Real time Tracking and Registration, Intelligent Interaction, Sensing and more. Its principle is to apply computer-generated virtual information, such as text, images 3D-Modeling, music and videos to the real world after simulation. In this way kind of information complement each other, thus achieving the enhancement of the real world. The results of research demonstrate the feasibility and innovation of AR as human-computer interaction technology. With the improvement of computing power of computer software and hardware.

1. Key Technologies of Augmented Reality

Intelligent display technology, 3D registration technology and intelligent interaction technology constitute the core technology circle of AR and play an important role in the development of AR.
  • Intelligent display technology</span >Which has become the most intuitive way for human beings to interact with the real-world environment. With development of intelligent display technology, augmented reality become a possibility, which is pushed to a new height by the various kind of display devices generated based on intelligent display technology. Specifically, there are three main categories of display devices
    • Helmet display
    • Handheld device display
    • Other display (PC Desktop)
  • 3D Registration Technology As one of the most critical technologies in the augmented reality system, 3d registration technology enables virtual images to be superimposed accurately in the real environment. The main flow of 3d registration technology has two steps.
    • First, determine the relationship between the virtual image, the model and the direction and position information of the camera or display device.
    • The virtual rendered image and model are accurately project into real environment, so the virtual image and model can be merged with the real environment.

2. AR React Native

ViroReact is the best option for developing AR app into React Native. ViroReact is a based on 2 APIs that dominate the world of Augmented Reality for mobile phone: AR kit for iOS and AR Core for Android. ViroReact is an open-sources development platform for rapidly building AR application using React Native. Focus on runtime asset delivery, glTF assets are fast to load and can be compressed into a compact size for transmission. glTF assets are provided in both JSON. gltf and binary glb formats. To create your model, you can use the 3D modeling software of your choice, but most preferable software is Blender.

3. AR With Android

Augmented Reality has crossed a long way from Sci-fi Stories to scientific reality. It is probably not very far when we can also manipulate digital data like sound, text and images in this real physical world and also can interact with it through a special medium.
  • Getting the 3D modelAndroid platform support glTF file format. glTF means GL Transmission Format. Now .glb files are a binary version of the GL Transmission format. These is type of 3D model file are used into AR and it also support animation and motion.

4. AR with ios

During Apple’s 2018 WWDC conference, a new 3D file format was announced in partnership with Pixar, called USDZ. USD or Universal Scene Description is format already used in Pixar’s 3D animation pipeline. USDZ is an extension of this filetype, and combine all assets require for displaying a 3D object into a single uncompressed zip file. The main reason for this is of course to have a good 3D file format for their ARkit platform. From iOS 12 onwards, i-devices support USDZ natively.


Here’s an overview of the
  • 3D point cloud:

    In AR, cloud is a virtual representation of the geometry of real-world object using a collection of points. Generated via photogrammetry software or 3D scanner, these points are capture based on the external surfaces of objects.

    Because Photogrammetry allows gathering 3D information out of 2D images, this method makes content creation more essential. It overcome ownership issues often faced with 3D method. As result, anyone can create 3D model by simply recording or scanning the real-world object.
  • CAD (Computer-Aided Design) CAD model are commonly the first step to prototyping physical goods, bringing first product view to life in the digital world. AR developer can repurpose legacy CAD models for augmented reality-based solutions.
  • Game, computer graphics Authoring software tools such as Blender, 3ds Max, and Maya are popular 3D design application used by AR content creators. Unity, Unreal Engine, and even Apple’s Reality Composer are great tools to assemble the pieces of content and make them work together for augmented reality.
  • Other 3D models: Beyond CAD, other popular 3D model format can be leveraged to power augmented reality solution, For example glTF 2.0, FBX, OBJ.
  • Blender for Augmented reality

    Any 3D modelling software provides the tools to properly design and export 3D models to be used inside AR experience for mobile application. Blender is one of them and being a free software make it a popular option also for creative that don’t want to invest on more expensive alternative.

    With Blender user can work on their 3D model, be it static or animated and correctly set all the parameters that make a model suitable for mobile, that typically include appropriate polygon count, texture optimization and specific file formats.


Learn the common AR terminology which is Use into AR Technology it’s help you get familiar with the terms associate with AR reality
  • Term used into AR
    • Action: An action is the “do something” part of a behaviour. For example, spin, bounce, and path are action that an object can take.
    • Anchor: An indicated 'trackable' point/area that can be used to position AR content.
    • ARKit: Library for AR features provided on iOS devices by Apple.
    • Behaviour: A behavior is an interactive property that can be added to an object in the scene. An object can have zero, one, or multiple behaviors attached. A behavior is made up of a trigger and an action.
    • bounding box: A visualization of the extents of an object or selection of objects.
    • feature points: Distinct recognizable features of an environment that can be automatically recognized by tracking engines. These are often corners and other joining edges where there is a detectable difference in colour from their surroundings.
    • image anchor: An image which is used for an AR tracking engine to recognize and attach content to. A good marker image has edges and other visual features.
    • .REAL: (.real) is the Aero document format.
    • surface:A real world surface that is trackable by AR. Surfaces are often interpreted by AR apps from a collection of plane-aligned feature points. For example, the surface of a table.
    • surface anchor: An anchor that is used to position and orient digital content on a trackable surface.
    • trigger: A trigger is part of a behaviour. A behaviour is usually in a "waiting" state until the trigger tells it to "run".


With hundreds of 3D file formats available it’s hard to know which 3D file format you should use or how it compare to other. 3D file format stores information about 3D model. This include geometry, appearance, scene and animations.
  • Common 3D file Formats Most 3D modelling software platform now support neutral 3D formats, however issues can arise if you convert 3D file too many times. Here are the eight most common 3D file formats and why it is.
    1. gLTF/GLB:gLTF/GLB is a neutral, open sources format. The Khronos Group create this file format for 3D web, AR, VR, Game and 3D advertising. It’s the first really well-defined standard for 3D. This file format supports geometry, materials, textures, colors, and animations. This includes PBR (Physical Based Rendering), so shadows and light will appear more realistic.gLTF is a base on JSON, so it store some data in external file like textures, shader, or geometry and animation data. GLB file store all this data internally.
    2. FBX:FBX is a proprietary 3D file format. Kardara originally developed this format. AutoDesk then purchased them in 2006 and continued supporting FBX. It is widely used in the film and video game industry. It supports geometry, appearance, as well as animations. FBX is most popular for animation and is used as an exchange formate between different program like Maya, 3DSMax, AutoCAD and others.
    3. OBJ:OBJ is a neutral 3D format when used as an ASCII variant. However, when used as a binary variant, it is proprietary. 3D printing, graphics, and 3D scanning all use this file format thanks in part to its ability to store geometry as well as color and texture information. This file format stores color and texture information in a separate file with extension. MTL. OBJ does not support animations but is one of the most popular interchange formats for 3D graphics.
    4. USDZ/USD:Apple and Pixar developed USDZ/USD. It is a proprietary 3D file format and mainly used for AR on iOS devices. This file format is most popular for 3D commerce since you can do placement and try-on of 3D models on iPhones with this format.
    5. STL:This 3D file format is most popular for 3D printing. It is a neutral 3D file format. This file format only stores geometry information.


  • Libraries for AR Technology
    1. ARCore:With ARCore, shape brand new experiences that seamlessly blend the digital and physical worlds. Transform the future of work and play at Android scale.
    2. ARKit:OS 11 introduces ARKit, a new framework that allows you to easily create unparalleled augmented reality experiences for iPhone and iPad. By blending digital objects and information with the environment around you, ARKit takes apps beyond the screen, freeing them to interact with the real world in entirely new ways.
    3. Vuforia Engine:Vuforia Engine is the leading augmented reality software solution that's been chosen by over half a million registered developers worldwide. By bringing together powerful computer vision, dynamic features and easy-to-use software tools we enable developers to create sophisticated, branded AR experiences. With the widest range of supported devices on the market Vuforia ensures your application will reach the broadest audience possible.
    4. Vuforia Expert Capture: Vuforia Expert Capture is the fastest, easiest way to create powerful step-by-step instructions that help front-line workers get their jobs done quickly and accurately. This out-of-the-box solution features effortless AR content creation for industrial enterprises looking to rapidly document expert knowledge and then easily scale that knowledge to new or redeployed workers as hands-on training or task guidance.
    5. Augment:Augment is an augmented reality platform that allows user to visualize products in 3D in real environment and in real-time through tablet or smartphone.
    6. Amazon Sumerian:Amazon Sumerian lets you create and run virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and 3D applications quickly and easily without requiring any specialized programming or 3D graphics expertise.
  • Software for AR Technology
    1. Adobe Aero :It is a know fact that Adobe make some of the best software for art and design, and Adobe Aero is no exception. You can create immersive augment reality experiences using assets you’ve designed in other apps without any requirement for coding.Aero adds a whole new dimension to the way AR experiences are designed. You can use 2D images from Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator or 3D models from Adobe Substance 3D Stager and third-party apps like Cinema 4D to create compelling designs that will leave your users awe-struck.
    2. Tvori :The best budget AR design Software. Whether creating story prototypes, shape XR apps or full-scale animation films, Tvori makes everything possible. You can learn as you go with Tvori, and no priop knowledge in 3D content creation is require before using the app. There is a extensive libraries of simple shape, props and effect to choose from, and you can also import 3D models, images, video, and sound to add to your project.With Tvori, you also have the option to export your work as videos, 360 videos, photos, 360 photos, VR experiences, and 3D models with animations. It is also very collaboration-based, making it easy to share your creations with colleagues working together on VR projects. Overall, it is one of the best VR design tools for beginners on a budget.
    3. Masterpiece Studio Pro:The best value VR design softwareMasterpiece Studio Pro is one of the best all-around options available for 3D modeling in VR. From concept art to designs, you can draw, model, optimize, rig, skin and animate directly with your hands in 3D and VR with PC and headset. You can also export projects to game engines and animation software for further development. It boasts some highly advanced features such as the auto-rigger and auto-skin functions that let you create an entire model in just one click. Other functionalities include a simple UI, mesh processing tools, texture painting, retopology, stamps, and kitbashing, making Masterpiece Studio Pro a favorite among artists and designers. The possibilities are endless with Studio Pro, and it is suitable for all levels of professional as well as personal use.
    4. Vuforia Engine: The best AR design software for advanced usersVuforia Engine is at the top of the list of most popular SDKs to develop Augmented Reality applications, and with good reason. First introduced by Qualcomm, Vuforia Engine is a comprehensive software that enables you to create engaging 3D product demonstrations and applications. It connects people to products through an immersive AR experience.
    5. Unity 3D:The best free software for AR and VR designUnity 3D</a > is the world’s most popular platform for creating 3D projects and has been the trusted choice of game developers, animators, and visual artists for years. It is a complete VR development tool and has a vast asset store of 2D, 3D designs and templates that you can directly import into the development environment. Unity 3D has been used to create games and build 3D solutions for the gaming, automotive, transport, manufacturing, film, animation cinematics industry. It is a testament to the software’s capabilities, and it is highly recommended if you are a professional AR and VR designer.


Augmented reality is a technology that goes beyond the screen and into your world. Developers are turning to augmented reality hardware in order to create innovative experiences for users. With all of this new hardware being released, developers need to have an understanding of what hardware they will need. If you are looking at creating an augmented reality application, make sure you read this article as it will help you understand hardware requirements.
  • For augmented reality development you will need the following hardware
    • Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660 Super, AMD Radeon RX 5600 XT, or equivalent.
    • CPU with a minimum clock speed of 3.5GHz.
    • SSD with 512GB storage.
    • 16GB RAM.
    • Android phone (S6+) with the latest OS installed.

KrunaL Parvadiya