BBC’s First AR App Will Let You Explore Ancient Artifacts With Your Phone

by Jamie Feltham • February 7th, 2018

The BBC is already heavily involved with VR, having created and backed several projects from 360 videos to full experiences like Home: A VR Spacewalk. Soon, though, the organization will make its first foray into AR.

This morning the BBC announced that it will be launching an AR companion app to its upcoming Civilisations series, set to air this spring on BBC2. The series is set to take a look at the foundations of British culture and the history behind it, exploring significant artworks, artifacts and architecture throughout time that led us to where we are today. It’s a spiritual successor of sorts to a similar series from 1969, redesigned for a new generation.

The companion app, meanwhile, will allow users to explore virtual recreations of some of these artifacts using their phones. Exhibits will include an Egyptian mummy from the Torquay Museum, Rodin’s The Kiss from the National Museum of Wales and the Umbrian Madonna and Child from the National Museum of Scotland. Users will be able to rub through layers of history, reviving the initially faded sculptures to discover how they would have first appeared after completion hundreds of years ago.

Look for the app to launch in the coming weeks on both iOS and Android. This could be a great example of the educational benefits of AR.

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  • Just another AR app that could be a standard 3D app on the phone. The only good news is that an important company like BBC is interested in augmented reality