During the last few years, with the advent of powerful Smartphone devices, Augmented Reality Technology evolved as a new buzzword across the globe. Few developers have already designed some very interesting Augmented Reality apps for Android and iOS. By the way, Have you checked out our article about Augmented Reality Technology? If not, even then just sit back and relax.
I do think that a significant portion of the population of developed countries, will have AR experiences every day, almost like eating three meals a day.
It will become that much a part of you. – Tim Cook, Apple CEO.
In simple words, it may be said that augmented reality technology seamlessly superimposes some relevant informative digital data (like the image, video, map etc.) atop the view of real-time environment taken through the devices in-built camera.
Augmented Reality enabled applications to deliver a composite immersive spectrum rooted in both virtual & real world. The augmented reality technology has been expanding its realm and opening huge possibilities every day by providing users with the incredible viewing experience.
Here, we present an article showcasing our top picks for the best Augmented Reality Applications for Android and ios. The list is encompassing both premium and freemium offerings so that you may get the best advantage out of them.
Table of Contents
Best Augmented Reality Mobile Apps
I have handpicked these AR based Apps for Android Platform. Few of them will make your shopping seamlessly easier, some of them will turn your mobile into a hi-tech Pandora’s box.
Ink Hunter – Virtual tattoo
Do you want to make a tattoo on your arm and you don’t know which one fits you best? If the answer is “yes” then Ink Hunter is probably the best augmented reality app suitable for you before getting a real one.
It’s a neat & user-friendly freeware app available at google play store, with a vast collection of designs by various tattoo artists.
It virtually gives you a glimpse, how the selected tattoo would look like when it is inked on skin.
Just draw three lines on your skin where you want the real tattoo- open Ink Hunter app- select a tattoo sketch from gallery or you may even try your own, and then peek through the camera of your Smartphone to find your skin tattooed.
You can even share this AR image with your friends and seek their opinion. And if you already have a tattoo, then using this app, you can also transform it into an artistic one using songs or videos!
It also has an ios version available.
Pokemon Go – The game of 2016!
In recent times, the Augmented Reality based game Pokemon Go has snatched attention of millions of people worldwide.
It’s a quite user-friendly freeware app that runs duly both on Android and iPhone devices. It uses GPS technology of your device to track real locations. It allows the players to travel amidst the real world and the virtual world of Pokemon.
While playing this innovative game as you explore your surroundings, your Smartphone starts vibrating which means that you are near a Pokemon.
As soon as you encountered a Pokemon, touch the screen of your smartphone to throw a poke ball to catch it. If you miss, it might run away. In this way, you can discover more than a hundred species of Pokemon.
Ohh…why am I explaining when you already knew it ?! Anyway, this Augmented Reality based game is available on iOS also.
Google Skymap comes with a clear display and a handy zoom tool that enables you to explore the celestial wonders at a clear night sky in a fascinating way. This wonderful freeware will magically instill you, by rendering the ability to rediscover the night sky up above, using your Android device.
Once installed successfully, just point your device towards the night sky while it’s dark and clear all around. This innovative AR app will let you identify different stars, planets, and constellations in real time, that are visible to the device camera.
You can even make a search for a specific planet or star, that is not available on your present screen. Directional compass and on screen interface will curate you to find the same even when it is obscured by the horizon or covered by a veil of cloud.
This app is not yet available in iOS.
Augmented Reality Apps for Education
Augmented reality is no more just a gimmick as it serves a limitless variety of purposes to sustain meaningful learning in the classroom.
AR based free or low-cost apps work in a nifty way to bring near life experiences to the boring classrooms as they avidly let the pupil interact with their lessons. You will surely be fascinated to see the students being eager and engaged in learning like never before with various educational AR apps.
These apps are rapidly growing in popularity and they possess the breakthrough potential to transform the way of teaching and learning in the landscape of education. Here we have summarized some of our favorite augmented reality apps for education.
For chemical reactions that were too dangerous to complete in the lab,
it was a great supplemental resource. – Courtney Pepe, High School Teacher, Monroe Township, New Jersey
This AR based chemistry app, crafted by some talented teachers offers a fun way to learn useful chemistry lessons. At first, teachers have to download some paper blocks provided by the app developer (elements4d.daqri.com). Then they take print out and assemble them to make some blocks, which act as trigger images for this marker based AR app. Each block face represents a single element of the Periodic table.
Using this app, students can even combine different elements together to observe their chemical reaction in action. There are distinct lesson plans of Elements 4D for elementary, middle and high school students.
This low cost (2.99$) AR based animated 3D human anatomy app curates kids to learn the structure and functions of different body parts of a human being. It is duly compatible with iOS, Android and Windows platform.
It provides illustrations in English and Spanish language. App’s augmented reality feature may be used to discover various parts of respiratory, digestive, nervous, excretory or any other systems on a real person through the camera of the device. This standout tool works better with Arloon’s downloadable square, small printouts.
This interactive and informative app also arranges for a quiz or test to assess the kids’ understanding, once a lesson is completed.
This marker-based AR app costs only 1.99$ and runs on iPad, iPhone and iPod devices. The app uses wi-fi and GPS system of the device and is triggered by the Science AR posters that can be downloaded in high-resolution PDF format, from www.appsbypaulhamilton.com at a cost of zero bucks.
Just point the device camera towards different parts of the printed poster and as soon as the device completes its scanning procedure, the images come alive on the screen by means of 3D models, videos and scientific diagrams.
Posters related to various topics including water cycle, erosion, planet earth etc. are available.
Augmented Reality Apps for Travel
Our planet earth is so vast, isn’t it? Seriously, did you ever consciously think of it? There are numerous travel destinations with numerous ways to reach them.
We are living in an evolving world that is constantly growing up, changing itself and offering newer means to explore it.
Therefore, modern travelers are always in search of up to date apps which can curate them by offering new ways to explore zillion of places. To support these globetrotters, augmented reality technology has been avidly adopted to develop various user-friendly apps.
These applications are constantly developing and improving with an aim to provide its user with some state of the art features to gather in-depth knowledge base about the places they visit. No doubt, it’s a great mission.
Some AR based trailblazing travel & tourism apps showcased below which have been deliberately designed to meet every backpacker’s need.
Wikitude SDK is a freeware compatible with Android 1.5+, iPhone 4.0, Symbian with Compass and Bada platform. This neat and user-friendly app won the Best Developer Tool award at Augmented World Expo 2017.
Wikitude SDK blends simultaneous localization and mapping (SLAM) technology, Geolocation based AR, 3D object recognition and tracking, 3D model rendering, marker-less instant tracking to provide a cross-platform AR experience for mobile, tablets and latest smart glasses.
Just point your device camera to any direction in a new town you arrived, the Starbucks World will show you if there is any Starbucks Café in that direction.
You can also check out Wildlife parks in Asia, World heritage list, Irish pub worldwide and much more from this app. You can download this application from www.wikitude.org.
ArchINFORM is a freeware application compatible with Android 1.5+ and iPhone 3.1+. It delivers a nifty 3D layer of Augmented reality with a huge database of architectural works for interested architecture buffs.
Here, you will find that augmented reality technology provides an awesome experience of sightseeing. This is a handy app for gathering vast knowledge base about historic building worldwide.
ArchINFORM is available on Layer and Wikitude AR browsers. This application can be downloaded from www.layer.com/download.
This freeware is an AR-based restaurant reference app duly compatible with Android, iPhone and Symbian devices. BuUuk uses the GPS of your device to show nearby restaurants in camera view and also recommends for available special deals, along with user reviews and pictures.
If you’re planning destination covers Asian countries or Australia, Newzealand, Dubai or maybe HongKong, then BuUuk is the application you must need. This useful AR application can be downloaded from Google Play Store.
This beautiful AR app is also available for iPhone users.
Do you know, more than 250 search and rescue teams use this powerful app to help backpackers worldwide?
This AR-based freeware application does an exceptional job in the landscape of the travel and tourism industry. It brings augmented reality technology to the countryside with more than 150,000 interactive & inspiring route guides along with free downloadable worldwide maps to navigate outdoor adventures.
ViewRanger works fine with both Android and iOS platform. It uses powerful GPS feature to plot amazing routes from mountain ridges to coastal strolls, from backpacking epics to family woodland walks, that is suitable for everyone.
This useful app renders on-screen directions as well as alerts whenever you wander too far off track.
ViewRanger uses the device camera to point out over nine million spots across the globe encompassing peaks and lakes, ridgelines, and glaciers. Here you can even share your tour experience to inspire more travelers to discover new destinations.
These are few of the best Augmented Reality apps for Android and iOS. There are plenty of other apps combining AR and Artificial Intelligence. If you come across any better AR app, don’t forget to mention in the comments.