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Blog: Business

What Can Be Done with the Layar Platform? 5 Helpful Usecases

Chris Cameron March 7, 2011

Layar has an extremely diverse community of developers creating augmented reality experiences of all shapes and sizes. To give you an idea of the different things that can be done on the Layar platform, we’ve put together a set of case studies featuring some truly unique examples.



Below are five case studies that show the flexibility and capabilities of the Layar platform and our outstanding community of developers. For each, click the “Case Study PDF” link to view the case study in full.



Layar Augmented Office - Case Study PDF
The Layar Augmented Office is an interactive 3D model that you can literally walk into and access information about the company, layer content, job openings and more.




streetARt - Case Study PDF
streetARt is an iPhone application that displays the public art, graffiti, tags and other forms of street art in your neighborhood. The third-party app uses the Layar Player to embed an Augmented Reality view, but it can also be viewed within the Layar app.



Exile on Your Street - Case Study PDF
Exile on Your Street is the official layer for The Rolling Stones, in promotion of the 2010 Exile on Main Street (Rarities Edition) album. Create and add posters in AR, listen to audio tracks, watch videos, purchase music on iTunes, and more.



The Invisible Artist - Case Study PDF
The Invisible Artist is a 3D Augmented Reality guide to 10 of London’s top contemporary art museums.




UAR - Case Study PDF
UAR (Urban Augmented Reality) displays images and 3D models of the past, future and “what might have been” for architecture in the Netherlands.





You can also find these case studies at any time on our Examples page.

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Layar: Impactful AR in Your Everyday Life

Chris Cameron February 23, 2011

It was over a year an a half ago when Layar co-founder Maarten Lens-FitzGerald posted a video to his YouTube account revealing details of the world’s first augmented reality browser. Today that video has been viewed more than one million times, so we thought it was time to refresh it for 2011.



Today, we are very excited to introduce a brand-spankin’ new video that expresses the vision and philosophy of Layar. Produced by the wonderful people at Campfire Creative, the video below features interviews with the Layar co-founders as well as examples of the impactful augmented reality experiences that live on our platform today.





Some of the really great layers featured in this beautifully-made video include:



Please feel free to spread this video around, embed it on your website or share a link with your friends on Facebook, Twitter or other social networks. If you would like to download the video, simply follow this link (Right click and choose “Save Link As”).

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Layar CEO Authors Foreword to Tomi Ahonen’s “Insider’s Guide to Mobile”

Chris Cameron February 22, 2011

As a former Nokia executive turned consultant and speaker, Tomi Ahonen has bolstered his reputation in the mobile industry by authoring six bestselling hardcover books and three eBooks. His latest book, The Insider’s Guide to Mobile, is a free eBook which details “the customers, services, apps, phones and business of the newest trillion dollar industry.”



The book marks Tomi’s tenth publication, and to celebrate the anniversary he asked Layar CEO Raimo van der Klein to author the book’s foreword. In it, Raimo details his own history in the mobile industry, including his time with Nokia and KPN, as well as his formation of Mobile Monday Amsterdam with fellow Layar co-founders Maarten and Claire.



Additionally, he explains his vision of where the mobile industry lies today.



“Basically now we have entered the third wave of mobile. First was Communication, second was Content and now the third is Context. We are barely scratching the surface of this third wave,” he writes. “The exciting stuff is happening in the middle, between the organized data in the cloud and the actual ‘dumb’ sensor information. In the complete history of content we have never been confronted with creating sensor based dynamic services that fit the context of a user. […] I consider this phase in mobile to be the phase where we will see the true face of this medium.”



You can read the entirety of Raimo’s foreword over on Tomi’s blog, Communities Dominate Brands, and to download Tomi’s free eBook, The Insider’s Guide to Mobile, head on over to the book’s page on Lulu.

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Layar’s 3D Augmented Office at Mobile World Congress, and an Introduction to Virtual Commerce

Adriane Goetz February 17, 2011










Layar 3D augmented office.
Outside view of the Layar Augmented Office.

As we mentioned last week, Layar is attending the 2011 GSMA Mobile World Congress conference/exhibition in Barcelona from 14-17 February, and we weren’t about to show up empty-handed.



Each afternoon at MWC Fountain, Layer is holding an Augmented Reality meetup where we show off our new Augmented Office layer, an interactive 3D model that you can literally walk into and access information about the company, layer content, job openings and more.



This layer was created especially for MWC, so it is only visible from Barcelona, but there is also a public version that can be viewed from anywhere in the world.



The 3D office combines elements of virtual reality with AR, enabling a 360 degree view of the space. You can look up at the multilevel ceiling, down at the tile and wooden floors, and around through the many windows where you can still see the “real” world.



Turn or walk around in the office and you see posters on the walls of some of our Layar Partner Network members, where you can touch the pop-up screen to visit their website, email them or follow them on Twitter. You also find portraits of our co-founders and our reps at MWC that you can contact or connect with on Twitter right from the layer.













Layar 3D augmented office.
Inside view of the Layar Augmented Office.

Continuing the office tour, you see posters on the windows for five of our coolest international layers that you can launch directly from inside the Augmented Office layer (A layer within a layer? Now we’re approaching Inception theory—be careful!).



Finally, near the doorway, you see a monitor on the wall that says “Layar News & Jobs” where you can see the current job/internship opportunities and read the latest news on our blog.



The concept of an “augmented office” allows any company to become an international company. You can place an office in the heart of Tokyo, Dubai or at Time Square in New York City.



But just as easily as you can place an office, you can place a store, selling merchandise through Paypal in AR! Case and point: Hostage Wear Shop. Hostage Wear is Layar’s first AR store, selling hats, t-shirts and other urban skate/streetwear products directly from the layer—there’s even a half-pipe in the store! (Although we don’t recommend trying to skateboard in AR… yet).










Layar 3D augmented office.
Outside view of the Hostage Wear shop.

Funnily enough, the Hostage Wear Shop layer actually started out as a joke. Herve Pellarin, creator of both Layar’s Augmented Office and Hostage Wear Shop (and the concept of virtual commerce in general), originally made the layer for his best friend to, in Pellarin’s words, “shut his mouth” about the frustration and expense of constantly having to make the tradeshow circuit to gain brand recognition and sell merchandise.



As anyone working in AR knows, monetization is a major issue at the moment, so virtual commerce is an exciting and much welcomed new element to the platform.



Pellarin is the man behind French development company HPSC, a member of the Layar Partner Network. He has made virtual commerce his primary focus, embarking on several new [mostly confidential] projects, and continues to push the boundaries in AR. Pellarin may still wear the coding hat, but assures us “I’m not a programmer. I’m a dreamer; an AR-chitect.”



You can contact Herve Pellarin at nocomp@gmail.com or follow @nocomp on Twitter.

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Layar 5.0 Beta Animation Features Spotted in the Wild!

Chris Cameron February 16, 2011

Last week, we opened up a beta release of Layar 5.0 for Android featuring new sharing and animation capabilities (as well as a few other handy improvements). We were very excited to get this version of the Layar client in the hands of developers to see what wonderful things they could come up with using these new features, and already we’re seeing some great stuff.



Developer and former Layar intern Anthony Maës just recently put together a nice looking layer that shows off the new animation functionality. If you’re running the beta on your Android device, search for “Ferris Wheel” and check out Anthony’s work. Or just watch this YouTube video:





The layer features a 3D model of a spinning ferris wheel with balloons floating around it as carnival music plays in the background. It’s a terrific example of some of the possibilities that Layar 5.0 will introduce for developers.



Anthony created the ferris wheel with two separate 3D models; the wheel and the supports. Being careful about how he designed the models allowed him to use Layar 5.0’s rotation attributes to simulate a spinning ferris wheel. To hear more from Anthony and see the source code, check out his post on the Layar Developer Support Forum.



As another example of animation in Layar 5.0, the ARcade layer has updated its 3D icons to include animation as well. Now the game’s tokens spin in the air and those ever familiar PacMan ghosts have shifty eyes.



If you’re running the beta client, have a look at these layers and let us know when you find other great examples of 5.0 features in the wild!

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