InsideAR Speaker Spotlight: Ronald Azuma

September 1, 2014

InsideAR Munich 2014

Welcome to our third edition of our InsideAR Speaker Spotlight series.

Meet Dr. Ronald Azuma!

Meet Dr. Ronald Azuma!

For our third edition of the InsideAR Speaker Spotlight, we are happy to introduce Ronald Azuma of Intel Labs. There he leads a group that designs and prototypes novel experiences that exploit upcoming technologies. Known for defining the term “Augmented Reality,” Ronald has all written a research paper, “A Survey Of Augmented Reality,” that the single most referenced publication in the field of Augmented Reality and is listed as one of the “50 Influential Papers” by MIT Press. You can check out his website, but let’s see what he has to say about Metaio’s InsideAR and Augmented Reality:

What are you going to present at InsideAR 2014?

Ronald Azuma: I will talk about Leviathan, a series of AR demonstrations that Intel showed at CES 2014, with the support of Metaio, to inspire visitors about the potential for AR to enable new forms of storytelling. I will also discuss other strategies to make AR storytelling compelling.

Have you ever attended InsideAR before and what was the most exciting part for you at previous events?

RA: I attended InsideAR in 2012. One of the most exciting parts of this event is seeing detailed presentations about commercial usages of AR where the presenters provided details about the benefits and return on investment of using this technology in industrial and professional usages. I have rarely seen this information presented in other venues.

What is the next challenge in AR that you would like to see overcome?

RA: Many AR systems know very little about the surrounding real environment. Many know only the relative location of the AR display with respect to a marker or image, enabling augmentations only on or around that marker or image. What is needed is increased sensing, understanding, and incorporation of the surrounding real world, and making use of that information in our AR applications. One example of progress in this is the incorporation of depth sensors into platforms. The Intel RealSense SDK will run on PC’s and tablets that have depth sensors built in, and will incorporate Metaio’s 3D tracking capabilities to enable new types of AR experiences that track and sense complex 3D environments, without having to build models of such environments ahead of time.

What is your personal vision of the future of AR? What Application do you wish you had today?

RA: AR will not achieve its full potential until it becomes the basis of new forms of location-based media, enabling new forms of storytelling and immersive experiences that are different from movies, TV, and video games today. I would love to see new, compelling commercial applications that use AR as a medium for novel types of storytelling experiences. Achieving that will require developing new enabling technologies, new forms of experiences, and new business models.

Catch more of Ronald Azuma’s views on Augmented Reality and storytelling in his presentation “Augmented Reality Storytelling: Leviathan and Beyond” where he will explore Augmented Reality as the future of storytelling and a behind the scenes look into the Leviathan project.

That’s it from us for this week – be sure to visit last week’s spotlight and if you’d like to watch some of the presentations from last year’s InsideAR event, check out our InsideAR YouTube playlist.


InsideAR Munich takes place on October 29th and 30th, 2014 at the Kleine Olympiahalle in Munich. Learn more at

Need a ticket? Register here:

 Interested in becoming a speaker? Get in touch with our team via:

You want to join us as a journalist or become a media partner? Send us an email: press [at] metaio [dot] com

InsideAR Speaker Spotlight: Court Westcott

August 19, 2014

InsideAR Munich 2014

Welcome to our first edition of our InsideAR Speaker Spotlight series. Over the coming weeks we will be introducing the speakers who will be presenting at InsideAR 2014 in Munich. Our speakers will cover a wide variety of topics related to Augmented Reality, from the technological outlook to social implications. We will be using this spotlight to give you a little more insight into our guest speakers and their role in the world of Augmented Reality.

Court Westcott

Meet Court Westcott of Commodore Partners!

For our first edition of the InsideAR Speaker Spotlight, we are happy to introduce Court Westcott, Managing Partner of Commodore Partners. As Managing Partner at Commodore, Court manages a portfolio of investments in tech companies (including Metaio!). As an investor in cutting edge technology, you can imagine Court has a thing are two to say about the future of tech and how Augmented Reality will play a role.We decided to learn a little more about Court’s history with Augmented Reality, and what he thinks the future will look like:


What are you going to present at InsideAR 2014?

Court Westcott: I am going to give a talk about whether or not computer vision will disrupt the search engine and change the origination point from where queries begin.


Have you ever attended InsideAR before and what was the most exciting part for you at previous events?

CW: This is my 3rd InsideAR.  It is always exciting to see all the amazing new innovations that Metaio has come up with and the imaginative ways its customers use their technology.


What is the next challenge in AR that you would like to see overcome?

CW: First, enough processing power to make continuous visual search to the consumer possible without draining their batteries.  Secondly, HMDs that are indistinguishable from normal glasses.  Fix these two problems and you will see mass adoption of AR.  Gesture is also still unresolved, but less of a bottle neck.


What is your personal vision of the future of AR? What Application do you wish you had today?

CW: I am terrible with names, so an app with facial recognition that provided me with people’s names would be a killer app for me.  My personal vision for the future of AR is that one day AR will provide everyone with perfect contextual data in real time, as needed.


Catch more of Court Westcott’s views on the future of AR in his presentation “Can Computer Vision Disrupt the Search Engine?” where he will explore the idea of computer vision and Augmented Reality disrupting the current model of searching and accessing information.

That’s it from us for this week – if you’d like to watch some of the presentations from last year’s InsideAR event, check out our InsideAR YouTube playlist.


InsideAR Munich takes place on October 29th and 30th, 2014 at the Kleine Olympiahalle in Munich. Learn more at

Need a ticket? Register here:

 Interested in becoming a speaker? Get in touch with our team via:

Metaio at 2014 hy! Summit in Berlin: Be crazy and disruptive

March 21, 2014

hysummit_picThe last two days we attended the hy! Summit in Berlin – the most fanciest and coolest Startup event in whole Europe. The founders of hy! Berlin, Aydogan Ali Schosswald and Hans Raffauf, brought together top industry executives, innovative startups and investors to further advance the digital transformation of Europe’s economy. The discussions focused on current trend topics, big data and research, e-health, security, mobility and wearable technologies.


“Pushing forward the dialogue between the new and old economy the hy! summit is a learning and innovation platform. At the summit decision makers of today will meet the ones of tomorrow”, says Aydogan Ali Schosswald, CEO of hy!. “Startups are exciting catalysts of our time when it comes to user-centred innovation. So our goal is not only to help them with general support but also giving them access to capital, science, politics and industrial infrastructure.”

dobrindtFederal Minister Alexander Dobrindt delivered the opening speech of the hy! summit and welcomed all participants to the “digital summit” and warned the audience: “Europe is standing on the border of being an innovation society to becoming a staganted one. Now is the time to do something.” Peter Thiel, angel investor at Facebook and Co-Founder of PayPal, as well as Charles Adler, founder of Kickstarter discussed topics around “new digital frontiers” and “innovation in the digital era”.

The most freaky show came from Ijad Madisch, founder of ResearchGate and a former doctor, who talked about his vision to create one single platform where scientists from all over the world could share their knowledge and interact with each other. And the vision came true: Ijad built ResearchGate and could even convince Bill Gates to become an investor for the Startup. Not a bad start, right?

Ijad Madisch

In addition to the leading startups and investors, established companies such as Bosch, Google, Siemens and of course Metaio were also present. The hy! summit managed perfectly to bring together decision makers of the new and old economy to identify and realize potential growth and innovation developments in the digital society.

We took also part in a fireside session “Future Applications for 3-D Spatial Awareness and Object Recognition” and had a discussion about the future of Augmented Reality, the valueness of developed applications and the future of mobile devices. These kind of debates with the AR peer group and beyond are very helpful and inspiring and we should encourage people from different industries to continue to discuss.

For Metaio the hy! Summit was a great platform to talk to new entreprenieurs with great visions and to get a lot of media awareness. Anett Glaesel-Maslov, PR Manager of Metaio, took part in the hy! Live WebShow and gave an interview about what Metaio is doing, how the AR industry changed in the last ten years and about keydriver projects. Here your can watch the complete interview:

Thank you to hy! Berlin for being part of the 2014 hy! Summit!

Metaio featured in BBC Click and ARTE Futuremag!

February 12, 2014

It was a very fantastic end to last year and a very cool start to 2014: German-French TV station ARTE and the BBC came to visit us to get excited about Augmented Reality applications from Metaio. Both shooting teams traveled to Munich and were interested in the hottest topics in the tech business: valuable Augmented Reality applications with actual use cases for wearables like Google Glass – we showed them everything!

BBC_12 Foto_1

See the results in both videos below:

BBC Click programme

With BBC journalists Dan Simmons and Nick Kwek, we enjoyed two exciting shooting days preparing a feature for the popular BBC Click programme showing a proof of concept for a Car Manual on Google Glass (featuring the Metaio SDK 5.0), which we presented at the InsideAR Conference in Munich, the Audi eKurzinfo application as well as the Window to the World, an innovative visualization concept with real-time interaction developed by Metaio and ART, which combines the physical and the virtual world to evaluate results immediately.

Take a look into the BBC movie yourself – the Metaio part starts from minute 9:19. It’s quite entertaining!

ARTE Futuremag programme

ARTE wanted to prepare a feature about new technological innovations and asked us to show valuable Augmented Reality use cases for different devices and in particular for Google Glass. The result is a very informative Futuremag feature with a deep look into the possibilities of our future. All Metaio related footage starts from minute 7:20. Enjoy!

September 7, 2012


One of our favorite fellow bloggers and Augmented Reality enthusiasts, we always look forward to Helen Papagiannis’s posts, projects, and thought on Augmented Reality and the industry. Hope you enjoy this article as much as we did, and thanks for the great post, Helen!

Originally posted on Augmented Stories:

I’m often asked where Augmented Reality is heading and what AR will look like in the next 5-10 years. Let’s take a peek ahead. (This article is part of a larger project and book I’m working on that maps AR’s past and future as a new medium.)

If this is your first time visiting Augmented Stories, please allow me to introduce myself: I’m a designer, PhD researcher, and consultant specializing in AR since 2005. In addition to working hands on with AR to conceptualize, prototype and design compelling experiences, I consult in commercial industry, advising and leading clients as their ‘AR Sherpa’ to chart new territory in this emerging field. I travel internationally to give public talks on AR (including two TEDx talks), and I’m also an active member in the AR research and academic community.

AR is advancing rapidly as a new medium, moving beyond just a…

View original 2,237 more words

insideAR 2011: John C. Havens

December 13, 2011
Sorry for the lack of insideAR updates recently- we have been quite occupied with the free release of our metaio Mobile SDK. Rest assured, updates will continue as originally promised. Oh, and look! It’s snowing.  

For those of you who weren’t able to attend insideAR 2011:

Not only did you miss a fantastic talk by Transitional Media Founder John C. Havens- you also lost the chance to see this guy rock out on blues harmonica. No really- that’s how John started off his presentation entitled, “Virtual Air Rights: How Augmented Reality Will Transform Advertising and Identity”.

Mr. Havens recently wrote an article for Mashable dealing with the same issue- his presentation at insideAR took the long form of expanding upon many of his ideas and theories regarding the role Augmented Reality will play in the future with regard to social media and targeted advertising.

For Mr. Havens, the question of virtual air rights is one that has yet to be answered or defined, but can be seen as an opportunity for the AR community when posited as a question of identity, especially that of the individual user.

According to Havens, when you take into account the emerging technology such as image recognition like Google goggles, social facial recognition platforms like Viewdle, gesture and eye tracking interfaces like the Microsoft Kinect, and general GPS and location-based services, the implications are pretty shocking when paired with social media data.

The future is not far from the following: “I walk into Starbucks and using my Google wallet I [pay], using Google Latitude I automatically check in [to the physical location]… I walk near the counter, as NFC improves, and you already know my preferences because of [shared social media data] and the idea is that you already know what my coffee is.”

Havens imagines a future where social technology turns the consumers into the marketing and leveraging tool rather than advertisements and paid media.

Brands could reward consumers for brand advocacy and loyalty every time that person shares or recommends something socially that could influence a purchasing decision.

Where AR comes in is the ability to access and display this information. Facial recognition technology could easily be used to pull up this kind of  data, especially in a future where AR glasses or contact lenses exist.

Havens imagines a system of “Accountability Based Influence”- social metrics and purchasing data that contributes to an overall drive of marketing and reward systems:

“To me this is inevitable- you’re watching your show, American Idol or something. The next day you walk to work and you get a text: “Hey you watched American Idol last night and Coke is a sponsor, do you want a free Coke for being a loyal fan? And then you walk into a store, someone hands you the Coke.” And of course, any other purchases would be made using Facebook Credits, which Havens believes may be one of the largest banks in the world in just a few short years.

Mr. Haven is a regular contributor to Mashable, and you can find him on Twitter at @johnchavens where he tweets about Social Media, Augmented Reality, and new technology that will almost assuredly control our every actions without us ever knowing it. We were very happy he joined us at insideAR and hope to see him again in the future. 

Free At Last: the metaio Mobile SDK

December 9, 2011

We are pretty darn excited.

Back in September, CEO Dr. Thomas Alt announced that we’d be releasing a free version of the metaio Mobile Software Development Kit (SDK) in an effort to both ensure and encourage the massive development and adoption of mobile augmented reality by 2014.

In that time, we researched and developed like crazy to make sure that our software would be the most advanced mobile solution available. We implemented Gravity Aware Feature Descriptors, a patented technology that makes image recognition and tracking faster and more robust. We benchmarked our technology by winning the 2011 ISMAR Tracking Competition. We integrated Unity3D for hardcore game developers and designers. And most importantly, we embarked on collaborative research partnerships with chipset providers like ARMST-Ericcson, and Texas Instruments. It’s been a busy fall.

As a result, we have for the entire mobile development community a powerful, advanced and industry-proven SDK, free of cost right from the start, with unlimited app-deployments for iOS and Android. A built-in advanced 3D rendering engine means you can start developing immediately. And it’s not a watered-down piece of shareware- this 3D rendering engine has been used in over 70 professional mobile apps, including our Augmented City demo.

This is the same software that has driven over 10 million downloads and enables millions of magazines delivered every month with mobile AR content.

We’re either completely crazy- or very, very passionate about what we do. Maybe it’s a little bit of both.

Read the press release.

Download the SDK.

Get excited.


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