Over the past year, two trends have emerged among augmented reality development software: make it easier to create AR content, and give AR apps better environmental understanding with just a smartphone camera.
Now dubbed the Reality Platform, 6D's AR Cloud platform can build a 3D mesh in real time, adds cloud anchors for multiplayer capabilities, offers location awareness for persistent content, and provides real world occlusion for 3D content built in Torch. In addition, the Reality Platform crowdsources the meshes built by various smartphones to build a comprehensive digital twin of the real world.
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"Typically cutting edge computer vision technologies have only been available through specialized coding frameworks, but now more people will be able to utilize these powerful capabilities with the flip of a switch," said Paul Reynolds, CEO of Torch, in a blog post statement.
Reynolds told Next Reality that the integration of 6D into Torch will be available to limited partners this month for advance evaluation, with commercial availability following in the second quarter of 2019. Interested parties can contact Torch for early access.
The aggregate powers of the two platforms aim to empower advertising agencies, marketing teams, and other non-programmers with the ability to easily create their own AR experiences that are more realistic and environmentally aware than what current generation toolkits enable. Moreover, the combined toolkit will work with both ARKit and ARCore.
"Just like Adobe did for desktop publishing in the '80s, Torch and 6D are democratizing AR development for all enterprises, taking it out of the specialized teams and making it available for everyone," said Matt Miesnieks, CEO of 6D, in the same blog post. "Now it's time to build."
However, in my limited testing with Torch, I did not find the app as easy to use as other platforms that boast simplicity in AR creation, and I'm fairly competent with general computing. And, while 6D has demonstrated some impressive superpowers, we've yet to see an app published in the real world running on its AR cloud platform.
Nevertheless, this pairing of AR companies is still a promising, albeit not yet completely seamless, development.