Overview of the ASUS ZenFone AR features in Google Tango
Smartphone users are already making full use of the additional reality. But at the same time, not all smartphones are capable of implementing AR “superpowers”, for example, using a camera to render graphics on top of a real scene on Google’s Tango platform, in particular.
Last year, we were already presented with the first Tango smartphone-Phab 2 Pro produced by Lenovo.
But the technologies do not stand still and it’s time to look at the new features of Tango using the example of ASUS ZenFone AR.
The Phab 2 Pro is quite an attractive device in terms of implementing the capabilities of Google’s Tango. However, the ZenFone AR has become a direct competitor to the Phab 2 Pro due to its elegance, high power and attractive design.
This week in New York, the development team demonstrated the capabilities of ZenFone AR. In particular, the work of the WayfairView application was shown.
Wayfair is a large online store of household goods (furniture, accessories, decor), which closely cooperates with Asus and companies engaged in the production of AR technologies.
WayfairView is a Tango-enabled AR application that allows you to “try on” thousands of items on the example of your home before buying them.
Currently, the store’s catalog contains about 40,000 3D models, the seller plans to significantly expand its range. For your information, the full catalog of the store includes more than 8 million products. At the same time, these 40,000 3D models are reproduced very quickly and easily. To use the viewing of 3D models using the ZenFone camera, you need to drag the product of interest to the smartphone screen. After that, you can rotate and move it around the house at your discretion.
Site specialists Phonearena.com we tested the application and were very satisfied, no bugs and hangups were detected.
In addition, the application can recognize surfaces, as well as parts of the room for which the product is selected. For example, if you are going to” try on ” a picture, then it can not be placed on the ceiling in any way, thereby allowing the user to place it in the right place.
It is not yet clear how ZenFone performs all these functions, placing objects exactly where they are allocated space, but these features make the smartphone not just a toy, but a real assistant in the process of creating the interior of the room.
WayfairView has been integrated into the Wayfair app for ZenFone AR and is presented on the device via Tango Discovery.
BMW i Visualiser
While the Wayfair app with Tango allows you to visualize a new clock on the kitchen wall, or a coffee table in the living room, BMW takes it to the next level with the iVisualiser app, which uses ZenFone AR’s Tango technology. With it, you can visualize the new BMW i3 or i8 right on the road. The app allows users to select a location and then display one of these cars as if it were standing right in front of you.
This application can also transform cars in real time, for example, change the wheels, color, seat upholstery. You can open the doors and look at the interior from the inside. Thus, the user has the opportunity to choose the modification of the vehicle that is ideally suited to his requirements.
So far, BMW offers to visualize only two models from its product range using the application, but we hope that the technology will continue to develop and expand its horizons. With the help of iVisualiser in the future, you will no longer need to go to a meeting with the seller to choose the right car configuration.
Solar System Simulator
Asus is one of the developers of Tango and is currently developing AR technologies for educational purposes, in particular, Expedition Google. The educational application will be designed for both teachers and students and will allow you to make a lesson plan, demonstrate educational projects to the class, etc.
While Asus is at the stage of developing this technology, so it’s too early to talk about the prospects and advantages. However, we assume that the application will work like the Solar Simulator developed by Google. Users will be given the opportunity to place the solar system in their own, but smaller space. In turn, Solar Simulator not only allows you to explore the vastness of the universe, but also gives you the opportunity to learn and interact with the environment. Each planet can be viewed at arm’s length. For example, looking at Saturn, you will be able to see its moon, scale, and even determine the speed of rotation, which, by the way, can be manipulated.
Once you have finished studying all the planets and learned everything you wanted, you can send the planets into orbit and enjoy the spectacle, getting an extensive idea of how huge our solar system is and how little space we occupy in its expanses.
Additional reality is not just a toy, it is a really useful thing, which sometimes even becomes a “stick-lifesaver”. However, no one denies the entertainment component of AR. To do this, you can use the Holo application, which turns the surrounding objects captured on a smartphone camera into 3D holograms.
Despite the fact that the current version of Holo works with ordinary smartphones, the new beta version is designed to use Tango, which allows you to achieve a more realistic visualization.
The 3D characters look impressive. You can pose with them or take pictures, and then share your “creations” with friends. In fact, this is an entertaining application that does not carry any semantic load and was created only to amuse the user, as well as a demonstration of how the Tango hardware can help AR applications work even more productively.
But all the features listed above are only 50% of what ZenFone AR is capable of. The smartphone works with Google Daydream viewer, with which the user can fully immerse himself in the world of virtual reality.
The Snapdragon 821 processor, Quad-HD AMOLED display and the unique ZenFone AR hardware bring the smartphone closer to the characteristics of the Google Pixel XL. And taking into account the fact that the device name contains the prefix “AR”, the new ZenFone claims to be the “smartphone of the future”.
For all those who are interested in AR technology, we recommend getting ZenFone AR to experience these hype sensations by their own example.