I have posted on Augmented Reality as a key trend since February 2005 when I started blogging. It still one of the topics I really enjoy. Below you can watch a short demonstration video on how our mobile phones (already using an old Nokia N95 !) will be the most important (and seventh) mass medium around from now on.
In my view Augmented Reality is the logical evolutionary endpoint of normal barcodes, shot codes, QR codes, RFID and SkuAir latest (branded) barcode. Mobile Augmented Reality seems to be the most intuitive technology. However, all mentioned technologies will co-exist. Mobile Augmented Reality is in my view relevant for more classic, static, long term, social, historical and nonprofit information on large object/subjects from large distances, the different (bar)code technologies are relevant for commercial, ecological, short-distance, timely, dynamic and ad hoc purposes while RFID has a very broad range of possible applications (medical, logistical, short range).
Some questions I have are:
- What will be the impact on the classic (mobile) search engines in terms of reach, usage and relevancy when Mobile Augmented Reality really starts taking off ? Search engines are indirect, take a few clicks and centralized. In my view, the decentralized, direct search capabilities of Mobile Augmented Reality apps are more consumer centric and will lower the impact of search engines over time. How will Google respond to Nokia in this respect ? Interestingly, yesterday Google announced a a new precision image search technology based on content analysis of the image at hand (a PageRank technology for images !)
- When we consider the four segmentation levels of our digital and physical world (me, my social network, my peers and the market/the public as a whole), how will Mobile Augmented Reality apps and information be structured and presented to the end user while he is coping with information overload, physical targets, spam, irrelevancy and shorter time spans/concentration bursts ? In my view the augmented digital information layer will be primarily be fed with tags/information/alerts from my own past (personal) usage (me -> emomapping for example based on GPS data combined with the AR layer) and my social network (e.g., TripIt, Dopplr, Twitter, Hyves LBS, Jaiku, Facebook etc.). In some cases a digital AR layer with tags, comments, ratings and recommendeded flags from my peer group or even the market as whole will still be useful but its impact will be lower relative to the current situation. Its emotional distance is larger relative to me and my social network with all its lifestreams/lifelogging boosting the notion of living parallel lives. This is an intensified way to explore the physical world.
- Will the usage of mobile augmented reality apps boost serendipity on the local, physical level or will it boost planned behaviour in advance with people optimizing/maximizing their lives (e.g., planning all highlights of best rated objects on my peer- and market/public at large-levels while consuming the bottom-up my social network and personal information on objects while physically near). I believe it will be the former scenario: more ad hoc, bottom up, exploratory search behavior using mobile AR. Go with the flow, spontaneity, Power of Now flocking and exploration. Smart Mobs realized.
What do you think about these questions ?