Vectorform shows visionary sales application for Google Glass

July 24, 2014

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Hardly any technology in recent times has been as controversial to society  as Google Glass. Many have opinions, yet few have actually had the opportunity to experience the device first-hand. When it comes to “true” Augmented Reality, what is Glass really capable of? Vectorform – one of the leading agencies for technology and design  has for some time now been hard at work developing applications for mobile devices such as data glasses.

In association with Mediaplus and Serviceplan, Vectorform has become the first company in Germany to develop an AR vehicle exploration tool. Launching on the BMW i8 hybrid supercar,  the Augmented Reality technology powered by Metaio (SDK) combined with Google Glass allows users a first-hand look at the super-cool BMW i8 like never before:

“While the social acceptance often lags behind in new technologies, companies need to seize the opportunity early in order to remain competitive. The Google Glass technology here makes use of new approaches and perspectives for marketing, service, production and sales, “said Alissia Iljaitsch, Executive Director Vectorform EMEA. “Pioneering new technologies are often the automobile manufacturers. In the sale of modern vehicles, the revolutionary glasses offers exactly to the important framework to highlight specific features into focus and to emphasize the innovation of the vehicles.””

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Identify internal and external values ​​with Google Glass

When promoting a vehicle to new buyers, companies often only have a short window of attention to present new and unique features. As such, innovative communication methods are always valuable. Google Glass combines the actual car exploration experience with the digital world in order to offer prospective buyers a completely new way of seeing the i8.

Here’s the application at a glance: Distributed around the vehicle are various “touch points” where Google Glass recognizes the contours of the car using Metaio 3D tracking technology. The first touch point demonstrates the new laser headlights by projecting virtual light beams right out of the car’s lamps. Subsequent touch points  illuminate the inner workings of the chassis or illustrate drive-train components with an  “X-ray” view. In addition, the aerodynamic shape of the vehicle is demonstrated using a virtual wind current that smoothly curves and swirls around the car’s bodywork. This “augmented reality” experience accompanies the buyer in a special way during the customer journey and delivers an innovative sales tool for an equally innovative vehicle.

Framework thought as an important element

During the development of the Google Glass App, the implementation of an appropriate content management system played an essential role. This allows Vectorform to easily update and support content (such as images, videos and texts) directly by the company itself. This ensures the application brings added value on an ongoing basis, rather than being a one-off demonstration.

We would like to congratulate Vectorform and their partners on this excellent application. We are very proud that our software encourages developers and creative agencies like you to create such great Augmented Reality!

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InsideAR Tokyo 2014: From Wearable 3-D Sensors to turning the world into a TouchScreen

July 24, 2014

InsideAR Tokyo - the 2nd edition – is over and has been a huge success for us. We thank all participants and partners from Cybernet, Intel, Canon, Epson, Fujitsu, Erba Holdings and Vuzix! This year we invited a diverse group of exhibitors, which we believe are of high interest for Japanese customers.
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Over 300 guests from 192 companies joined us to be in the center of AR innovations; we saw huge interest from a very diverse groups of participants – from  3D designers to app developers to  large players who have been  developing their own AR algorithms for over a decade now and looking into utilizing AR for high-accuracy industrial applications. Most importantly, the Gurus of AR and MR joined us on stage to share their knowledge, their success stories and collaboratively discuss the path of AR development for the upcoming year.

2nd edition rocked: InsideAR Tokyo tripled its attendees

InsideAR has a format of an open conference and everyone is invited to present their vision on the technology and exhibit their innovations. We hope you enjoyed the live demonstrations, workshops, and were -most importantly-  inspired by the speeches from the leaders of the industry: Prof. Kato, Canon, Intel, Epson, Fujitsu, Erba Holdings, Vuzix, and many more who contributed to making this conference bigger than last year: we are proud of tripling the number of attendees and doubling the amount of speakers.

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Best feedback from our guests in the visitor’s survey!

 

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Wearable 3D Sensors are the most driving innovation in the AR field, today. Augmented Reality on Head-Mounted-Displays was one of the main topics on the agenda. It was, represented by renowned manufacturers, such as Epson (who teamed up with Mitsubishi to demonstrate the AR Maintenance scenario on the Aircon unit) and Vuzix, but also by the new players in the field, as Brillianservice (Mirama Glass with gesture control) and Westunitis (ultralight inforod glass aimed for industrial tasks). Metaio also showcased scenarios on Google Glass.
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R&D insights

Turning the whole world into a touchscreen could be realized by a visionary approach from Metaio’s R&D Labs. The Thermal Touch is a patented future method of triggering AR on a selected object. RGB sensors combined with an infrared camera help to register a person’s heat signature on any surface and then combine it with Metaio’s AR software.

However, it was not all about wearables. From Intel, Canon, Fujitsu and NGrain we received insights on Industrial AR approaches used today, and were excited by all the possibilities.

The workshop presentations are available to download on our website.

 


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And what says the team?

Here is some feedback from our team members who helped organise the conference this year:

Dr. Irina Gusakova, Senior Product Sales Manager:

“We were very pleased to see so many new corporations joining us for InsideAR Tokyo this year – united in our goal to make the Japanese AR segment bigger and better. Metaio has a very strong relationship with its Eco-system in Japan, as it has always been one of the top markets for our company, and we like to believe that our customers would say the same about Metaio. Japan became a new home for Junaio, a broad circle of local developers here brought to life some of the most successful campaigns, such as Penguin Navi or Starbucks. This is a very positive sign for us, it means we are doing a good job, and are appreciated by both our developers and users.

We received very positive feedback around the conference and the current trend makes us believe that 2015 we will meet you all again in Tokyo!”

Matthias Greiner, Senior Business Development Manager Junaio:

“It was a great experience to visit Tokyo and insideAR 2014  this year. Being in one of the most exciting cities in the world, having interesting discussions with AR specialists from all over Asia, getting in touch with impressive technology demos and, of course, the delicious Japanese food has made insideAR 2014 a great happening. Japan is one of the most interesting and fastest growing AR markets today. It was amazing to talk to local developers and technology providers and having the chance to learn about their current and future AR projects.”

Thomas Berton,Software Engineer

“InsideAR Tokyo 2014 was,in my opinion,. a very successful event. This was made possible Not only because we had great speakers but also because our  guests  were very interested in the technology. We can definitely see that wearables are one of the next generation of devices that are promoting Augmented Reality. I was personally impressed by the number of wearables that are now available on the market, all of them having their own special customization. Amazing!”

Sudhanshu Kapoor, Business Development Manager OEMs:

“When they first told me that I was going to be on a plane to Tokyo next week, I was the happiest person on the planet. It has always been a dream of mine to go to Japan – I not only wanted to witness the Japanese hi-tech world but also wanted to present my hi-tech solutions to them. Fortunately,  “insideAR Tokyo 2014”  was a great success- we got such a great and warm response from the visitors. It was a busy and exciting time I had no time to even take a coffee break OR click a few pictures. I was asked so many sincerely technical questions from our Japanese visitors, that not only showed their affection towards Augmented Reality, but also the growing awareness of it among developers, and hi-tech enthusiasts.

As I drive Metaio´s hardware IP division – primarily promoting and licensing our AREngine to  chipset OEMs-  it was very impressive to see that the visitors really acknowledged such need of having HW acceleration to enable “Always ON, Always Augmented” scenarios. All in all, it was a great trip to Japan – InsideAR, Japanese hospitality, amazing vegetarian food, well managed transport, respect towards rules, their culture, warmness,…. and what not. Looking forward to being there again for much longer time now!”

We are happy that all our guests made it an unforgettable event! See you in Japan next year for the 3rd edition of InsideAR Tokyo! 

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A guestpost by Dr. Irina Gusakova


Doing Magic with Augmented Reality… for real!

July 17, 2014

A guestpost by Andreea Raducan

If you could do magic, what would be your favorite trick? Well, some might say: “let’s make money!” So too did Simon Pierro  with his “How to get rich…!” magic trick, which he is now sharing with everyone in an amazing video proving that it is truly possible!

What is the mystery behind the “AR Money”?

The key ingredients are: a brilliant mind, some Augmented Reality “magic”, plus a sprinkle of “real” magic. From these three elements, the AR part is perhaps the easiest one. Since Simon is already equipped with the other two, all he had to do was to contact Metaio for support with the Augmented Reality part.  It all started in 2010, when he first discovered AR and its potential. At a time when AR was known only to a few, Simon found Metaio: a team he describes as “very flexible, creative and open to new ideas”, with extensive knowledge and experience in Augmented Reality. Together, they built the “Christmas show ”. “We had lots of fun” he said, and “stayed in contact for a long time”. According to him, “Metaio is very reliable”, both in terms of technology and as partners. This is why he decided to contact Metaio again in 2014 – to “be creative together”.

Where is the boundary between Augmented Reality and the real magic?

You probably noticed the hand-drawn dollar bills in the video. The role of AR in this trick is to digitally recognize (or “track”) these bills and “transform” them into realistic looking ones on the display of the device. One remarkable feature in this tracking process is the stability and robustness of the rendering: the digital banknotes follow precisely the movement of the physical ones under the tablet.

However, the “real” magic happens afterwards, when the physical, hand-drawn banknotes are transformed into real physical ones. Brilliant, isn’t it?

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So how does he manage to do this? You might wonder.

Well, as much as I wanted to find out myself, I could not convince him to reveal his secret. What I did manage to do, is to discover how ideas come to his mind. Unlike others might think, “Inspiration doesn’t just come out of the blue”, Simon says, “You need to concentrate on what you do and look for opportunities around you, never stop thinking! Then, when you have an idea, you just have to believe in it and work hard to make it happen. You need to make efforts to find that idea and then to bring it to life; it will not happen magically.”

Thus did the “How to get rich..!” idea become reality. When Simon discovered AR, he became “absolutely fascinated” by the technology. “The factor that AR and magic have in common is that they both make things appear and disappear”. The question for him was, how to bring these two together and make people believe in both. He was convinced that such a combination would open endless possibilities. He did find a way, and what an incredible way, isn’t it?! Simon just loves to be creative and work with interesting people.

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Simon also loves the freedom of pursuing his ideas, turning visions into reality, while interacting with so many people. He loves seeing the impact his work creates – the reactions he draws from people. Seeing how they relate to his work, “with tears in their eyes”. “Moreover, it is so interesting to see how people from different countries express their emotions and impressions differently!”

I asked Simon what he is doing with all the money. He laughed saying “they all go with my illusion”. When asked about his future ambitions, Simon says “I don’t have plans for the next 10 years. Things are changing so much! For example, 5 years ago I had no clue about Augmented Reality. Who knows what the future will bring?  You should really stay flexible and open.”

For the time being, we are about to witness one of his dreams come true: performing live in front of large public audience. This is something he wished for a long time and which is going happen, as he will be performing his magic tricks live in Mannheim  (October 28) and Munich  (October 29). If you want to see the magic for yourself, this is your chance! Until then, discover more on his website.


Weekest Links – Early July

July 7, 2014

Did you augmented your 4th with some fiARworks?

Augmented Reality in the Age of Wearables

Mr. Scully speaking on a panel of experts about the future of augmented reality.

Metaio | Junaio Recap

AR Toys Competition Jury Member #4: Introducing Pati Keilwerth [Augmented Blog]

Augmented Reality Makes Us More Human, Not Less [Tom's Guide]

Augmented Reality Made Easy – Webinar [PaperSpecs]

Augmented Reality News

Holographic optic could revolutionise augmented reality (and even works in 3D) [Stuff]

Head-up Displays: Technologies and Global Markets [Digital Journal]

The Top 5 Most Useful Augmented Reality Apps [Bidness Etc]

Oculus suspends Rift sales in China after “extreme” reselling [Vizworld]

Speck Design Collaborates with Google on Project Tango Tablet [MarketWatch]

Google’s Project Tango Could Define The Future of Augmented Reality [Benzinga]

R Security Uses Augmented Reality Video and Click to Call Through Engage Mobility to Promote Residential Protect America Security [MarketWatch]

K-Glass to be unveiled in 2015 [The Korea Herald]

Shining a light on the past: ‘Virtual Reality’ torch project missing fragments on to ancient treasures, restoring them to their former glory [Daily Mail Online]

Mobility’s Promise [Energy Biz]

Drakerz-Confrontation augmented-reality card game launches in the U.S. [VentureBeat]

Google Glass’s Thad Starner Wears the Future [IEEE Spectrum]

Enriching the User Experience with Augmented Reality Technology [Strawberry Hill]

Please DO Touch the Dinosaurs at the Natural History Museum [Smithsonian.com]

Scottish government uses augmented reality in campaign against second-hand smoke [The Drum]

FDA clearance for augmented reality device lets surgeons see each critical step before they make it [MedCity News]

Upcoming Events

Webinar – Metaio Creative: Interactive AR [Sign Up Here]

InsideAR Tokyo – July 8th [Program Info]

Wearable Technologies Conference, July 8th – 9th [Register Here]

Pick of the Week

A major difference between augmented reality and virtual reality is that augmented reality inherently has you interact with the real world while virtual reality seeks to immerse you in an entirely different reality. A panel about augmented reality and wearable computing at New York’s CE Week 2014 explored some arguments for (and against) a future embracing augmented reality. Check out the panel session below and be sure to read the article Augmented Reality Makes Us More Human, Not Less for more information.


AR Toys Competition Jury Member #4: Introducing Pati Keilwerth

July 2, 2014

All great things come to an end.

LP_AR_toys competitionNEU 1

The submission deadline for the AR Toys Competition from Toywheel and Metaio was on Monday this week and we want to specially thank all AR fans who submitted their ideas! There are great proposals and we are now checking and evaluating all of them very carefully. Our great Jury will then carefully select their favorites and we will let you know as soon as they decide the winner of the AR Junior Award and the  AR Toymaker award!

In the meantime, we would like to continue by introducing our 4th member of the awesome AR Jury …..drum roll…..

Pati_KeilworthPati Keilwerth: A storyteller par excellence

PATI KEILWERTH after finishing law school at the University Passau, was hired to coordinate the protocol of the Berlin Film Festival. She continued working for the Berlinale in various departments and for the Broadcaster rbb and some media labs – all while also studying Audiovisual Media Science at the Filmschool HFF “Konrad Wolf” in Potsdam-Babelsberg. Directly after her diploma with a thesis on international Co-Production she began employment with German filmmaker and playwright Wim Wenders.

After a three-year tenure as Wim Wenders’s Executive Assistant, she embarked on new terrain in the media industry and has been engaged in cross media and interactive storytelling ever since. The past two years she worked for RTL Disney in the online department and focuses now on projects with PATISSERIE FILM.

AR Toys competition is awesome because…

“…I’m happy to be invited to be part of the Jury. In the past years I have been very involved with interactive storytelling, games and digital toys for kids and we also frequently tested some augmented reality features with kids. They had a lot of fun. So I’m curious to see what new app ideas there are and which of these I would like to try out with the kids of my friends and family.”

Thank you, Pati for supporting us!


Last reminder AR Toys Competition & a new jury member

June 27, 2014

Weekend is coming and exactly 3 days are left to join our AR Toys Competition!

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The competition is open to everyone including developers, non-developers, parents, AND children all over the world. The competition features two categories: the “AR Toymaker Award” which is specifically targeted towards adults and the “AR Junior Award” is open to children and entrants under the age of 18. Each category requires the participant to submit a concept of an augmented reality game or toy.

New jury member Rolf Kosakowski

Portrait Rolf Kosakowski_finalWe are happy to introduce our latest jury member, Rolf Kosakowski to you: 46 years old he has been an entrepreneur ever since he left school. He is a huge fan of technology, in fact, there is a load of gadgets in his office and he can answer any questions related to digital tools.

Since the age of 17, Rolf has managed his own advertising agency, KB&B – The Kids Group. The company now has 25 employees, and Rolf operates it together with his wife, Julia. Throughout their international marketing activities, they have consulted customers such as; Super RTL, Sony Entertainment, Lufthansa, MIGROS, and many others in the children and family market.

Children and family marketing by KB&B – The Kids Group

By analyzing the children market trends and developing individual strategies – from TV-Spot to website, online, offline and apps – they have developed international advertising campaigns. Rolf is very proud of KB&B’s latest baby: The Lufthansa children app “Take-Off – The fun-packed journey for little passengers”, is now ranked among the top 10 free iPad apps for kids on the iTunes Store. Rolf’s Motto is: “Crazy enough to be taken seriously by kids! Serious enough to make adults understand that it’s not crazy!”

Why do you support the competition?

“App development is our most important new business field at KB&B – The Kids Group. Augmented Reality presents  a huge opportunity for all kinds of app development. Merging real life and fictional storytelling is just the perfect concept for any kind of toy. I am very happy to learn more about the ideas, and especially curious about the concepts the young participants hand in. Maybe I will be spotting some new talents?”

In your words – what’s the potential in Augmented Reality for kids?

“Kids have a huge benefit when compared to adults: They are very curious and adapt to new technologies quickly and joyfully. I believe that Augmented Reality can teach in a way that has not been possible before.  Furthermore, AR has the ability to lift kid’s fantasies to new a whole new level. I see a lot of potential in AR-apps.”

What would you like upcoming apps for kids to be like?

As with any kind of app, childrens applications should also be technically high performing, entertaining and secure. It is self-evident that they may not implement salecalls, since this in inappropriate for children  and, not to mention, illegal. They should address kids at their level: If the target group is preschoolers the app must operate without text. If it is for teenagers, then safe communication tools should be included.

But most of all, I wish that the new concepts that come out of this competition are mind blowing, creative and fresh; in other words, something that we have never seen before. So, Good luck to all the competitors. I am excited to learn about your ideas.


Metaio R&D Lab Releases 6D Augmented Reality Holodeck Technology to Developers

June 25, 2014

Yesterday we were revealing the world’s first 6D Holodeck technology that places virtual environments directly in the real world allowing smartphone users to explore them with their on-board cameras. We are now offering two sample source codes for the technology to developers so that they may build immersive and interactive experiences like next-generation augmented reality games.

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“Virtual and 360 experiences need true immersion,” said Metaio CTO Peter Meier. “If you’re in a virtual environment, you should be able to move around as if it were the real world; that’s what we want to enable with our 6D technology- we want to enable the Holodeck.”

But how does it work?

The 6D Augmented Reality Holodeck technology (or 6D-AR, for short), utilizes the latest Simultaneous Learning And Mapping (SLAM) algorithms working in tandem with the on-board motion sensors (IMUs) to anchor a virtual environment local to the user. Once the virtual environment is attached to the real world, the user can move and navigate in and around the virtual area as if it were there in real life, needing only the camera of their smart device.

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Metaio is releasing the source code of two 6D example projects on its developer’s portal. We are hoping that these examples inspire our developers and creatives to design next-generation augmented and virtual reality experiences, like an action game someone could play in reality itself, or immersive educational experiences like visiting foreign places or navigating an electron shell of an atom at close range.

The source code for the 6D-AR Holodeck examples is now available. Developers can download the Metaio SDK and the source code here.


ARchive LAPL – Augmented Education

June 20, 2014

ARchive LAPL

You may have seen the Junaio blog post about Professor Robert Hernandez’s class “Augmented Reality and Journalism.” The class successfully created a Junaio channel for the Los Angeles Public Library to make visits to the library more interactive. But once they were done, the students wanted to do more.

That’s when they brought in design firm Neon Roots. Neon Roots worked together with the students to transform the Junaio channel into a standalone iOS app. The end result app, ARchive LAPL, has all of the original content from the Junaio channel, plus a few added touches to give the app a little more flavor. You can use it in the library to participate in a scavenger hunt as you solve riddles and search for various augmented treasures hidden throughout the library.

ARchive LAPL is available on the App Store and you can visit the AR Journalism website for images to test out the app but to get the best experience you’ll have to visit the Los Angeles Public Library. Hopefully we’ll see you there!

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Weekest Links – Late June

June 16, 2014

Germany won today’s match 4-0! And best of luck to team USA playing later today!

augmented reality gamers

Courtesy of The Star Online

 

Metaio | Junaio Recap

Thermal Camera Turns Many Things into Interactive Surfaces [MIT Technology Review]

AR Toy Competition – Extended Deadline and Meet the Judges [Augmented Blog]

Metaio Reaches 100,000 Developers [Augmented Blog]

Free Historic Augmented Reality Tour of the Asbury Boardwalk Launches June 29 [New Jersey Stage]

#ARToys: Extended Deadline + Introducing Michaela Haberlander [Toywheel]

Meet the AR Toys Competition Jury No. 1: Csongor Baranyai [Toywheel]

Metaio’s Thermal Touch and the Future of Wearable AR Input Methods [Brainberry Global]

Augmented Reality News

Microsoft rumored to have put Project Fortaleza augmented reality glasses on hold [Mobile Nations]

Augmented reality puts players into videogame action [The Star Online]

Does Wearable Technology Have a Future? [Mobile Commerce News]

Hello, Google Glass: Microsoft tries to patent touch input for eyeglass frames [Geek Wire]

Augmented Reality Signs Could Overlay Personal Maps On The Road Ahead [psfk]

Augmented reality puts players into video game action [Yahoo 7 News]

Finding 3D pose with a monocular camera [IMV Europe]

Augmented Australia 1914-2014 has a great opening in Venice [InfoLink]

Wearable Augmented-Reality Solution for Color Blindness [UCSD Computer Science and Engineering]

Google begins testing new feature for its augmented reality glasses [Mobile Commerce News]

Augmented reality road markings and signage “could be applied as a digital layer” [Dezeen and MINI Frontiers]

Upcoming Events

Webinar – TBD

SFAMA – Print & Digital Unite! How To Create Integrated Campaigns That Get Results [Register Here]

Pre-I/O Google Glass Hackathon [Register Here]

Wearable Technologies Conference 2014, July 8-9 | USA [Register Here]

Meetup – The Today and Tomorrow of Augmented Reality, June 18 [Register Here]

InsideAR Tokyo, July 8th [Register Here]

Pick of the Week

Lowe’s has created a augmented reality room dubbed the “Holoroom” to help customers visualize home improvements using digital technology. Using a series of markers places throughout a room, Lowe’s Holoroom hopes to bring the Star Trek holodeck one step closer to reality. The Holoroom will be installed in various Lowe’s stores in Toronto this year. Read more about it here.

Courtesy of CNBC

Courtesy of CNBC


AR Toys Competition – Extended Deadline and Meet the Judges

June 13, 2014

AR Toys Competition

Summer is starting to kick in and to get the ball rolling on your augmented summer, we’d like remind everyone about the AR Toy Competition currently underway! The competition is open to everyone including developers, non-developers, parents, AND children all over the world. The competition features two categories: the “AR Toymaker Award” which is specifically targeted towards adults and the “AR Junior Award” is open to children and entrants under the age of 18. Each category requires the participant to submit a concept of an augmented reality game or toy. Prizes for the winners are aimed to help bring the winning concepts into fruition.

AR Toy Game

Originally, the deadline for the competition was June 16th, but seeing as how the summer holiday has just begun, the deadline for the AR Toy Competition has been extended to June 30th. This gives more time for everyone, including kids just beginning their summer holiday.

Submitting an entry is easy: simply visit the Metaio AR Toys Competition page or the Toywheel AR Toys Competition page and follow the on screen instructions. The entries will be reviewed by a panel of judges including:

Csongor BaranyaiCsongor Baranyai – Independent Game & Narrative Designer

Michaela Haberlander

Michaela Haberlander – Funding Advisor for FilmFerneshFonds Bayern

 

We will update our post with the remaining judges once they have been announced by Toywheel.

Be sure to visit the Toywheel homepage and our previous post for more information about the AR Toys Competition. We look forward to seeing all the creative designs submitted by people of all ages from around the world!

AR Toys Competition logo


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