iOS 11.2 has brought hundreds of new features to iPad and iPhone including all new App Store where y...
, by Shirley Crossman
ARKit is a tool for developers. In any case, it is not actually a thing that iPhone users have to be pretty worried about. Nevertheless, a look at what exactly it contains will probably tell us almost everything about how Apple developers will implement the augmented reality and how it will look in the future on the iPhone.
ARKit is the framework for applications and games with augmented reality. This type of framework turns your living room into a surrounding environment or the world of a particular application. This is a part of Apple’s tool in iOS 11. and it works not just with the iPhone 8 family.
What apps will use an ARKit feature?
ARKit is a pretty new feature. In any case, there is already a large number of applications demonstrating, in fact, that it has the ability to arrange (at least as video clips or trailers). Here are some of the best demos.
Skyguide is a pretty neat app for astronomy, which inserts galaxies into the sky. We also do not talk about ready-made ones either. With the compass and your location, it has the ability to qualify the actual stellar charts for your position.
ModiFace 3D allows you to see how you look with a different color of hair. It meets more advanced requirements and is better than some Snapchat filters.
This is an interesting demo due to the fact that it really works on the object recognition and tracking of objects in a real space rather than mapping the rooms which everyone associates with AR.
The Machines is a multiplayer RTS game that allows multiple players to perform actions in the same AR environment. You control the army of fighters in the spirit of Command & Conquer.
It has extended components like a sound that is louder when you perform the action, and approach the console-grade graphics.
How does it work?
ARKit uses an iPhone video camera to reflect the environment. The main part is recognizing where the walls and the floor are placing the basic geometry of the place. This is an Apple type of Google’s Project Tango but has fewer demands to hardware. For the Tango project, you need a special video camera array with dual cameras and an IR transmitter. This allows you to arrange an approximate 3D model of the room “on the fly” and track down the movement with 100% accuracy.
ARKit does not require it. In any case, it recognizes planes like your floor. Then, it utilizes the phone’s video camera and its own motion sensors to track the movement when the iPhone moves and turns.
The core of ARKit creates an opportunity of dropping objects into the environment and manipulating them with a touchscreen. In addition to defining real-world objects, the key task is to track down objects as the iPhone moves. As soon as it loses track, all the visibility is demolished. One of the main spheres where ARKit can be used is the design of the interior. You can place the chair in the corner of the room and see how it looks when you turn the phone to a different position. This is similar to the advanced version of the virtual features of online glasses stores.
Motion microprocessors like M10 in the iPhone 7 Plus have every chance to effectively track the data from an accelerometer, a gyroscope, and magnetometer. This allows you to keep under control the movement in a three-dimensional place without excessive requirements to the equipment. Google has already advertised something similar called ARCore. This will be a Project Tango for phones without the latest technologies of a video camera.
We tend to think about a fictitious, futuristic real world when we start thinking about AR and VR. But some of the best ARKit applications are actually mundane enough.
The AR limitations
As in any form of AR, ARKit processor is quite intensive. It means that it will quickly discharge the battery, and the phone/iPad can warm up or become very hot. Thus, ARKit is not focused on these needs. In order to overcome the issues with a rather fast moving, Apple still explains to the creators that they are obliged to advise users to delay work on the Apple Developer site.
Which phones does ARKit support?
ARKit is specialized not only for the fresh iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X. It is specialized for iPhones and iPads that use microprocessors A9, A10, and A11 as well.
Thus, it includes the following devices:
- iPad (2017)
- iPhone 6S
- iPhone SE
- iPhone 6S Plus
- iPhone 7 Plus
- iPhone 7
- iPhone 8 Plus
- iPhone 8
- iPhone X
How can ARKit measure the distance with “one eye”?
Magic is not required. The motion detectors of the iPhone enable you to approach with astonishing accuracy as the device is moved or tilted. ARKit allows making it approximate with a great level of accuracy as the device is moved. But it has the ability to quickly reanalyze the same scene when your hand movements force the phone to bend. This association between the motion sensors and the camera completely eliminates the problem of the presence of only one video camera. I said that this is not a magic, but it’s close enough, isn’t it?
Some Apple phones have dual cameras, which are necessary for normal mapping of spaces like iPhone 7 Plus, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X. However, ARKit is still working with other phones.
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