Home Platforms The Big Platforms Are Giving Augmented Reality A Real Push

The Big Platforms Are Giving Augmented Reality A Real Push


Augmented reality is about to hit its stride thanks to large media platforms, which are leading the way.

Snap was early, but over the past 12 to 18 months, Facebook, Google, Apple, Amazon, Microsoft, Alibaba and others have all made big bets on AR by either investing in companies or creating (some might argue copying) proprietary products.

Nearly all the big platforms have their own AR developer toolkits.

Apple launched Version 2.0 of its ARKit in mid-September, which makes it easier for advertisers to create branded filters and tap into the iPhone’s three-dimensional camera functionality. Facebook has its Camera Effects platform and plans to roll out AR-enabled ads for the news feed in time for the holidays. Google has ARCore, which developers can use to build AR experiences for Android.

And with a tool called AR View, Amazon allows people to see what items will look like in their homes before placing an order.

God help us, smart glasses could even be making a comeback. Snap is still pushing its Spectacles, Magic Leap is pouring cash into its mixed reality goggles, Microsoft has its HoloLens headset and Apple acquired a company called Akonia Holographics in August that builds displays for AR glasses.

“The tech giants have jumped in,” said Ori Inbar, founder of Super Ventures, an early stage VC fund for AR startups, speaking Thursday at VentureFuel’s Brew summit in New York City. “That’s a huge indicator of where the market is, and it’s driving a lot of the adoption we’re seeing.”

And where the tech giants jump, lustful startups follow. Inbar claims roughly 1,500 AR-related companies have pitched his fund in the last three years. More than $3 billion was invested in AR startups over the past year, according to Digi-Capital, a consulting firm that advises AR and VR companies.

Marketers, however, are still figuring out how to get the most out of consumer-facing applications for augmented reality.

Enterprises are embracing AR (and VR, to some extent) as a sales tool or a way to train technicians or healthcare professionals. But other than messing around with Snap filters, most advertisers still are at a loss for how to deploy AR as a revenue-generating part of their marketing mix.

“The marketer’s problem now is that there are so many pockets of innovation,” said Sarah Fay, a partner at AI tech-focused VC fund Glasswing Ventures and former CEO of Isobar and Aegis Media North America. “Things get fragmented in so many different directions.”

Must Read

Advertible Makes Its Case To SSPs For Running Native Channel Extensions

Companies like TripleLift that created the programmatic native category are now in their awkward tween years. Cue Advertible, a “native-as-a-service” programmatic vendor, as put by co-founder and CEO Tom Anderson.

Mozilla acquires Anonym

Mozilla Acquires Anonym, A Privacy Tech Startup Founded By Two Top Former Meta Execs

Two years after leaving Meta to launch their own privacy-focused ad measurement startup in 2022, Graham Mudd and Brad Smallwood have sold their company to Mozilla.

Nope, We Haven’t Hit Peak Retail Media Yet

The move from in-store to digital shopper marketing continues, as United Airlines, Costco, PayPal, Chase and Expedia make new retail media plays. Plus: what the DSP Madhive saw in advertising sales software company Frequence.

Privacy! Commerce! Connected TV! Read all about it. Subscribe to AdExchanger Newsletters
Comic: Ad-ception

The New York Times And Instacart Integrate For Shoppable Recipes

The New York Times and Instacart are partnering for shoppable recipe videos.

Experian Enters The Third-Party Data Onboarding Business

Experian entered the third-party data onboarder market on Tuesday with a new product based on its Tapad acquisition.

Albertsons Takes Its First Steps Into Non-Endemic Advertising, Retail Media’s Next Frontier

Albertsons is taking that first step into non-endemic advertising next week via a partnership with Rokt to serve ads to people who have already purchased groceries.