As the digital age continues to evolve, industries are leveraging advanced technologies to revolutionize user experiences. A prime example is the integration of Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) into the tourism sector.
The partnership between Google’s ARCore and the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) is a testament to this evolution. These major players have recently launched a preview of immersive AR experiences in the Visit Singapore app, promising to redefine the way tourists explore destinations.
Google’s ARCore and Singapore Tourism Board Introduce AI-Powered Guided Tours
AR in the Travel Industry
Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) are making waves in the tourism industry. These technologies, designed not to replace but to enhance travel experiences, add a layer of interactivity and accessibility to destinations.
Major tech players are using this opportunity to blend improved AR and VR tech in the industry, signaling a hybrid future of travel.
ARCore’s Innovative Partnership with STB
During Google I/O 2023, Google’s ARCore and the Singapore Tourism Board (STB) unveiled two immersive AR experiences on its Visit Singapore app. These experiences, centered around Merlion Park and Victoria Theatre & Concert Hall, are powered by Google’s ARCore Geospatial API.
“Google’s AR and geospatial technologies have expanded the possibilities of complementing travel experiences with highly immersive and informative experiences…We’re thrilled to work with the Singapore Tourism Board.”Miguel de Andrés-Clavera, Group Product Manager, Google Partner Innovations (PI)
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The Visit Singapore App
Currently, the Visit Singapore app offers two AR experiences. A full launch, featuring more locations, is slated for the end of the year.
The Power of ARCore’s Geospatial API
Google launched the ARCore Geospatial API in 2022. It aids developers in creating world-anchored experiences, using the same technology that has been powering Live View in Google Maps since 2019.
The API uses AI techniques to match images from the scanned environment, allowing for precise virtual content placement in the real world. The adoption of 5G technology bolsters the AR experience.
STB’s Vision of AR
“XR has strong potential to enhance the on-ground visitor experience by bringing characters and stories to life… Google’s ARCore Geospatial API uses a combination of Visual Positioning System (VPS) and Global Positioning System (GPS) to deploy 3D AR content precisely anchored to specific points.”Wong Ming Fai, Chief Technology Officer, Singapore Tourism Board
The AR Experience
The AR guided tour on the Visit Singapore app leads visitors on an immersive tour of Singapore’s iconic landmarks and hidden gems, guided by Singapore’s beloved tourism mascot, Merli.
Each stop features an AR experience that enables visitors to engage with Singapore in new ways, from discovering local cuisine to uncovering history. One highlight is a larger-than-life string quartet performance at the Victoria Theatre and Concert Hall, powered by Google’s Visual Positioning System.
To understand more about the fascinating innovations unveiled by Google at the Google I/O 2023 event, where this partnership was announced, check out our comprehensive coverage on the Google I/O Keynote Live.
STB and Google’s Partnership
STB is Google’s first tourism partner in their global ARCore Early Access Program, co-creating new innovative tourism use cases. This partnership is a monumental step towards the future of travel, promising engaging and immersive experiences for travellers and local explorers alike.
The collaboration between Google’s ARCore and the Singapore Tourism Board signifies a pivotal moment in the evolution of the tourism industry. With the introduction of immersive AR experiences in the Visit Singapore app, the future of travel is undeniably at the precipice of a digital revolution.
As more destinations adopt this technology, travelers can look forward to more interactive and engaging ways of discovering new places, resulting in more memorable and enriching experiences.
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