Back in 2018, Google introduced the Cloud Anchors API in ARCore, which made it possible for users to share the same AR content across devices. Starting today, Google is making Cloud Anchors more widely available for developers with ARCore 1.20, allowing more apps to create AR content that can persist over a period of time.
The nice thing about the Cloud Anchors API is that it’s cross-platform, so developers can create experiences that can be shared between iOS and Android devices. That means an iPhone user can collaborate on an AR experience with someone who owns the new Pixel 5. Back in 2018, Google highlighted the AR app “Just a Line” that made it possible for users to draw in a 3D space with other people.
In a blog post announcing the new feature, Google highlights a handful of apps that take advantage of the Cloud Anchors API. One of them is MARK, a social platform that lets people leave AR messages in real-world locations. You can essentially tag famous landmarks, but only friends and family can see what you wrote.
Google highlights some other apps, too, many of which utilize AR for education purposes. REWILD Our Planet, for example, features AR content that allows users to venture into earth’s unique habitats and interact with endangered wildlife. There’s also SJ Labs, which uses Cloud Anchors to help railway passengers find their way in Sweden, and Lowe’s Persistent View, which will let users design their home in AR with the help of an expert.
Over the last few months, Google has put much more focus on AR experiences, recently introducing new Live View features in Google Maps. With persistent Cloud Anchors in ARCore 1.20, developers will now have more powerful tools to create next-level AR experiences.
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