On February 27, Chicago Connectory member, mLab, hosted its first live Tech Trends Today webinar series in the space. The session’s topic was augmented reality (AR) with guest speaker, Ed LaHood, CEO of Thyng. Ed shared his insightful knowledge about AR, the future outlook of the technology and how it can impact all businesses and industries.
Ed has built and invested in VR startups for 25 years. He even started the second virtual reality company in the world, right here in Chicago. Since then, he has shifted his focus from virtual reality (VR) to augmented reality (AR). His company, Thyng, is a new type of communication platform, where it uses AR and ties it into different types of communication forms that have multiple purposes in the business world.
Ed began the Tech Trends Today webinar with an explanation of how AR differs from VR. He explained that VR is entirely focused on a computer generated world, while AR is comprised of computer generated images that come to life while maintaining the vision of the real world around you.
Ed then shared real life use cases demonstrating how two different types of AR are impacting the world – target-based AR and environment-based AR.
Target-based AR is focused on a specific object. For example, when the AR system hovers over a product, such as a box of mac and cheese, the AR function will recognize that object and start playing a real life video of promotional mac and cheese recipes. Thyng’s AR system is able to hover over the item, recognize the product and present the related content for users.
Meanwhile, environment-based AR is based on the physical environment around a user. Thyng’s system is able to have characters appear in real time (see photo below), and users are able to interact with the characters.
All Thyng AR experiences are created and hosted on the cloud allowing these experiences to be editable and accessible to all. The future looks bright for AR as Thyng plans to roll out their 5.0 version of their app this spring. Be sure to check it out!