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Pokemon GO's AR Will Be Upgraded to Make the Game More Realistic

Pokemon Go will be one of the first apps to embrace Apple's new AR augmented reality technology.

Apple revealed its new ARKit AR technology during yesterday's WWDC keynote in the US.

The technology will use faster and more stable motion tracking to improve AR apps on iPhone and iPad. Users can also expect improved lighting and scaling effects.

Once the ARKit update goes live, Pokemon will be more grounded and cast realistic shadows.

"Apple is introducing a new platform for developers to help them bring high-quality AR experiences to iPhone and iPad using the built-in camera, powerful processors and motion sensors in iOS devices," reads an Apple statement.

Is improved AR part of our Pokemon Go wishlist? Check out the gallery below to find out...

pple belives the ARKit update will also benefit home shopping apps like IKEA.

"ARKit allows developers to tap into the latest computer vision technologies to build detailed and compelling virtual content on top of real-world scenes for interactive gaming, immersive shopping experiences, industrial design and more," the post adds.

Pokemon Go's ARKit update doesn't have a release date, but fans can expect to see some improvements when iOS 11 launches later this autumn.

For those interested, I'll share a little background information on the state of AR and Apple in laymans' terms. :)

There are a few 'flavors' of Augmented Reality technology that folks are working on right now.

"Markerless" Tracking

By far the coolest advance in AR so far, this technology uses the camera stream itself to grow the software's understanding of an environment and the device's orientation without the aid of 'markers' (like QR codes, or other easy-to-identify features). It appears ARkit will be a markerless solution that can keep track of a digital object even if you change your vantage point.

In simple terms, this means you'll be able to walk in a circle around Pikachu, and it'll stay on the sidewalk where you first encountered it.

This stuff is magical - and super fun to use.

"Marker-based" Tracking

This is basically Yugioh. A QR code, cereal box, image you printed out, etc, are used to "anchor" the digital content. If you slide the marker away from you, the digital content will slide with it.

Still fun technology, but having to rely on markers severely limits its adoption in the current market.

Gyroscope-based tracking

This is what Pokemon GO uses right now.

Basically, turning your phone will let the gyroscope know which will let the software know to move the digital content.

It's the "tamest" AR approach, and doesn't even require a video stream. It's also by far the least CPU-intensive approach to AR and the easiest to implement, which is likely why Niantic opted to use it for the early versions of Pokemon GO.

It's also the lamest, and is only a stepping stone to greater things, imho.

How is Apple able to do Markerless tracking?

Apple silently acquired Metaio - the industry leader in markerless tracking - two years ago last May. Metaio was making very exciting advances in phone-based markerless tracking solutions, and had a sick API back then. Then suddenly, their homepage became a "We're gone" message and they were never heard of again.

It leaked later that they were acquired by Apple, and we've been waiting to see what Apple was creating ever since.