Sunday, February 23, 2014

6 Platforms to Create Augmented Reality

When most people first try augmented reality(AR) in education, they start with applications that have the AR content already built into the app. Apps like AR Flashcards, PBS Kids CyberChase Shape Quest, and Crayola Color Alive have this, and are a great way to get your feet wet. As educators, we know the power of creation. Hopefully one of the following 6 platforms will help you and your students dive in to creating your own augmented reality!

DAQRI 4D Studio is "Augmented Reality Made Easy."
The first creation platform is from our friends at DAQRI! 4D Studio will allow users to create augmented reality campaigns with no prior coding knowledge, just basic computer skills. Educators will be able to apply for a free education 4D Studio account. The features are currently very similar for the free and paid versions. Brian Mullins and the DAQRI team are not trying to just augmented reality, but enhance it! You can learn more about 4D Studio on their website

* DAQRI 4D Studio is currently being updated and is* 

unavailable to new users. Please stay

tuned for more exciting information later this year!

Screenshots from 4D Studio
4D Studio Dashboard

4D Studio Designer
4D Studio Library

Next is the augmented reality platform from Aurasma. Aurasma allows the user to create AR using their mobile application and online using Aurasma Studio. Although the two are very different in their capabilities, but give the user a free platform to create personalized experiences. 

*Metaio was acquired by Apple and is no longer available*
Junaio Developer powered by Metaio Creator is an online platform that allows you to create AR content to view using the Junaio mobile application. 

I. Creating a Junaio channel:

There are two ways of creating an AR experience for Junaio: either using the Metaio Creator, a graphical, easy to use Interface for creating AR (paying platform, demo available, more info here: ) or by using Junaio’s Developer API (for free)

II. Releasing the channel:

In both of the cases, it is possible to release the AR scenario as a channel in Junaio. In order to do so, two steps are required: Testing the channel before making it public – it is at this stage that the QR code is generated and the Developer must first scan the QR code and then the trigger image. So only the person creating the AR scenario is seeing and scanning the QR code.  Publishing online: once he considers the app is ready to go public (online), he has to submit it, which is again, for free. The channel is afterwards reviewed by one of our colleagues and in maximum 3 days, it is published. The reason why we are first reviewing the channels is that  we need to make sure everything is according to the legal requirements. Once the channel is public, the developer receives a notification via email.

At the end of these two steps, users will be able to just scan the trigger image in order to view the digital content attached to it. The video below will give you an example using the Junaio app to view an augmented reality experience created for the OETC 2015. 

Instructions on how to use Junaio's AR browser

Layar Creator is an easy to use free online platform. This platform gives the user an easy drag and drop format with button and content templates. There are a couple things that bother me about the Layar Creator. The free account only allows you to publish content with ads and video overlays require a URL. This bothers me because it takes away from the user experience and creates a trigger image that is very similar to a QR code. Layar is a nice easy to use tool I would recommend to educators new to AR. 
Two Guys AR experience created using Layar Creator.

Augment Dev is another tool that provides users to create online or in their mobile app. The Augment app allows you to select a 3D model and add it to a custom tracker or trigger image. You can also add shadows, rotate the model, as well as pinch and zoom with your fingers. Augment Dev is an online platform that provides many different account options but the ability to try any level with a 14 day free trial

I used the flier as a trigger for the 3D model of a Minion inside the Augment app.

Many people might not have noticed, but in the past week there has been 2 NEW platforms released allowing users to create augmented reality! Both platforms are from companies well known in augmented reality realm, Blippar and one of our favorites DAQRI!

image from
Blippar has released their augmented reality creation tool called Blippbuilder. Blippbuilder allows you to create interactive and exciting experiences using a simple drag and drop format. You can get more information about blippbuilder by applying on their website.

I hope one of these 6 online platforms will help you or your students to not only create augmented reality but meaningful learning experiences! 



  1. Hi 2 Guys! These apps look great! I'm starting with Aurasma now,this looks like such a fun way to teach science! I'm off to watch your tutorial now :)
    Science for Kids Blog

  2. We've done a lot of work with Aurasma here, and the results have been very pleasing. I'd strongly recommend having a try with it - students and parents really enjoy it, and it's not that tough for teachers to setup and use either.

  3. Hey,

    Take a look at CraftAR from Catchoom. We've put together our benchmarked top performance image recognition solution with an easy-to-use drag&drop interface that you can use from any web browser.

    It's free to sign up!

  4. Another open source platform is Qualcomm’s Vuforia and we used it creating a light hearted employee engagement app. You can find more details here:

  5. Awesome article, Drew. We're starting off in a parallel universe to these companies because we believe that while the solutions that companies like Layar or Aurasma offer are really cool - they kind of tend to promote their own mobile apps to end users.

    To us that's disastrous for any marketer or brand.

    That's the sole reason we launched - to help brands as well as agencies deliver their own fully branded AR experiences. Our pricing starts at just $750, is fully managed and the white label app comes for free with any of our augmentation packs.

    I invite you to check us out and give your thoughts.

  6. I think these are the best 6 platforms to develop Augmented Reality. Images shows how these platforms are useful for this development. Thanks to share these useful platforms. Digital agency California

  7. I dont think Daqri 4d studio is available anymore. I have been trying to find a download for months now. No luck. Also Metaio is shutdown. Aurasma is ok but it is spotty and doesnt always work right for advanced features.

    1. Rob, Have you found any other platforms that work like daqri did? Aurasma is an okay options for now but was just wondering if you found another.