In Chrome, AR will appear on WebXR without additional applications
Google believes that 2018 will be a turning point in the history of the Internet, which will become more exciting, thanks to the company’s new WebXR API. In short, WebXR provides a platform for easier optimization and integration of VR and AR applications (virtual and augmented reality applications) directly into web browsers. And from today, developers can already use the API to create VR for Chrome.
For a while, the VR built into the browser will be something special, nevertheless, in the near future, AR seems more useful. It will take some time before it will be possible to transfer 3D objects to augmented reality inside Chrome, and to be honest, this will not happen so soon.
See how the Chromium demo version works on the Pixel 2XL:
Although the Google demo version is quite simple in terms of augmented reality, it works quite well. Some hotel AR applications are not as smooth as this: it was possible to move the chak-mool around the room, rotate it with two fingers and control it well with the help of 6 degrees of freedom.
It is quite enough to play with the object, but an educational moment has also been added here. Floating dots around the chak-mool offered additional information when you clicked on them. It turned out that the red and blue paints used to paint the statue’s sandals helped researchers link it in time with other works of art found in Mexico.
The demonstration was actually very similar to visiting a museum in Barcelona with a Google Tango-enabled tablet, only this time a special device was not required. Web-AR will be very useful in education and in satisfying our curiosity.
Although the contribution of AR to the browser is clear, the question remains “When will we be able to use this?”. This demo will be available in a few weeks to developers running early builds of Chrome Canary, and Google will hold a separate web session at its I/O conference so that these people will be engaged in embedding AR in the browser. Unfortunately, everyone else will have to wait, since the Google APIs used to implement this technology are not ready yet, so it is not known when our browsers will receive these updates.
Nevertheless, Google gives some hope: a lot of code echoes the virtual reality built into the browser, so developers do not have to start from scratch. Obviously, we will still have to wait, but given that 100 million smartphones and tablets technically support augmented reality, it is important that Google and its partners use this experience correctly.