Samsung Netherlands to Pre-Install Layar Augmented Reality Browser on its First Android Phone

--AR News: acrossair's iPhone Browser, Zugara's Facebook-Integrated Game, GraffitiGeo's Restaurant App

SPRXmobile announced Friday that Samsung Netherlands will pre-install its Layar augmented reality browser (note: for more on the Layar platform--which superimposes layers of interactive digital information on top of real-time video on a smartphone's camera screen--see the articles published on itvt.com, June 17th and July 9th, and the interview with SPRXmobile co-founder, Maarten Lens-Fitzgerald, published July 16th) on its first Android phone, the Galaxy (i7500). According to the company, the Samsung version of Layar will offer, in addition to the browser's regular content, exclusive layers provided by Dutch restaurant review site, Buienradar, and ilocal ("Samsung Search"). The company is set to unveil version 2.0 of the Layar browser at its Layar Next event in Amsterdam this week.

In other augmented reality news:

  • acrossair, the London-based company behind the Nearest Tube augmented reality application, last week launched an AR browser for the Apple iPhone. A demo video of the browser is embedded above. (Note: for more on acrossair, see the interview with its co-founder and managing director, Chetan Damani, that was published on itvt.com, August 14th.)
  • Palo Alto, Calif.-based start-up, GraffitiGeo, has developed an AR application for the iPhone that overlays recommendations and reviews on restaurants seen through the phone's camera screen. The app is intended to complement the company's core offering, which is a Yelp-like service that includes a gameplay element. Video of the AR app is embedded above.
  • Zugara, the Los Angeles-based interactive marketing agency that developed the Webcam Social Shopper augmented reality application profiled on itvt.com, June 24th, has developed a Web cam-based AR game, called "Cannonballz" (http://www.cannonballzthegame.com). According to the company, it built the game to showcase its proprietary ZugMo Motion Capture User Interface Engine, which it bills as allowing anyone with a Web cam and a Flash plug-in to physically engage with various elements that are integrated into a video stream via the engine's gesture-recognition capability. The game, which features Facebook integration, challenges players to dodge cannonballs shot by pirate ships and to rescue their Facebook friends by touching their icons. "We chose casual gaming as a way to showcase the ZugMo Technology because over 200 million people play casual games every single month," Zugara CEO, Matt Szymczyk, said in a prepared statement. "It's an experience we're all familiar with, and we hope will allow people to see the greater potential for this technology. Gaming is also the perfect execution to show the power of social media integration. For 'Cannonballz' we integrated Facebook Connect to allow users to not only bring their friends into the actual gameplay, but to quickly and easily share their scores and the game with their friends via their news stream." A video of the game is embedded above.

Region: 
Europe