Market Reality: North & Snapchat Use iPhone's TrueDepth Camera for Mobile AR & Magic Leap Adds Concepts as App Category

North & Snapchat Use iPhone's TrueDepth Camera for Mobile AR & Magic Leap Adds Concepts as App Category

Apple might not be ready to unveil its rumored-yet-unconfirmed smartglasses. But the iPhone's current depth-sensing hardware is proving to be useful for both smartglasses makers and mobile AR apps.

This week, North launched a new app that leverages the TrueDepth camera on the iPhone X and 11 series smartphones to conduct the fitting process for its Focals smartglasses. Meanwhile, Snapchat is utilizing the camera to capture 3D images and video.

On the developer side of things, Magic Leap World store has a new app category that will make it easier for developers to share pre-alpha apps and ideas.

In the enterprise world, TeamViewer is expanding its take on AR productivity apps into the realm of industrial-grade smartglasses.

North Launches App for in-Home Fitting & Try-on of Focals

Wearables startup North has made a smart move to get its Focals smartglasses into the hands of more consumers.

On Wednesday, the company launched a new Focals Showroom iOS app that leverages the TrueDepth FaceID camera on iPhone X, XR, XS, XS Max, 11, 11 Pro, and 11 Pro Max smartphones to map the faces of users and complete the custom-fitting process for the smartglasses in their own homes.

Continue reading to find out how the Focals Showroom app could potentially impact North's ability to move units of Focals.

REALITY BITES: Speaking of smartglasses, it appears that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is calling an audible on his company's efforts to build AR wearables, reportedly enlisting Ray-Ban parent company Luxottica to assist. Working under the codename Orion, the product is expected to be a standalone device capable of replacing, rather than pairing with, smartphones.

Snapchat Leverages iPhone's TrueDepth Camera for Creating 3D Content

After adding dual cameras to its camera glasses, Snap is finally taking full advantage of the depth-sensing abilities of newer iPhones as well, extending the use of its new 3D Camera Mode.

Rolling out to Snapchat on iPhone X series and new iPhone 11 series this week, 3D Camera Mode uses TrueDepth camera to capture 3D images and videos. In addition, users can add augmented reality effects to the resulting content, and share them with others.

Read on for more details on 3D Camera Mode and how it will help Snap sell its inevitable smartglasses when they arrive, then read further for Snapchat's latest example of AR advertising.

REALITY BITES: L'Oreal acquisition of Modiface two years ago appears to have been a catalyst for other AR cosmetics technology providers to strike up partnerships with retailers. The latest example comes from Perfect Corp., the company behind the AR cosmetic app YouCam, who is now partnering with the Alibaba Group to integrate its tech into Tmall and Taabao online stores.

Developers Can Now Publish Experimental Concepts to Magic Leap World

Magic Leap is making it easier for developers to share their spatial computing experiments with other Magic Leap One users.

On Thursday, Magic Leap opened up Magic Leap World for developers to publish concepts, which as defined by Magic Leap, are "free apps with limited functionality" available to Magic Leap One users for the purposes of testing and evaluating.

Continue reading to find out more about how developers can publish concepts, some of the first available concepts to install, and how this helps Magic Leap grow its ecosystem.

Image via Magic Leap

REALITY BITES: It looks like Unity is finally ready to let select developers get their hands on its Project MARS tool for augmented reality development. Timoni West, director of XR at Unity, openly invited Unity developers with AR experience to schedule time for some in-office user testing at Unity's San Francisco office with Bushra Mahmood, principal designer at Unity.

TeamViewer Pilot Gains Support for Vuzix, Epson, and RealWear Smartglasses

Businesses that have adopted enterprise-grade wearables for their workforces now have a new option among the multitude of AR productivity apps that can help their team members communicate in AR.

A well-known brand among IT and help desk technicians, TeamViewer is extending its TeamViewer Pilot AR mode from its mobile apps to Android-based smartglasses from Vuzix, Epson, and RealView.

Read on to learn more about the TeamViewer Pilot update and where the app now stands among the crowded field of enterprise AR platforms.

REALITY BITES: Last week, AR display maker WaveOptics closed an oversubscribed Series C funding round totaling $39 million. When WaveOptics opened the round in Dec. 2018, it sought just $26 million.

Every Friday, Next Reality reviews the latest headlines from the financial side of augmented and mixed reality. This weekly Market Reality column covers funding announcements, mergers and acquisitions, market analysis, and the like. Check out previous editions of Market Reality for more news you may have missed.

Cover image via North

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