Augmented reality is the technology that puts virtual objects into the real world either through an AR headset or by using the camera on a phone or tablet. Users then interact with those virtual objects from the screen, and the line that separates the virtual from the real world becomes a bit fuzzy.

The bunny ears and mustaches of selfie filters are one of the most obvious applications, but augmented reality was also the technology behind the Pokémon GO video game that launched in 2016 and quickly became an obsession for many around the world as users chased Pokémon characters around public areas. We’re just at the beginning of the possibilities and as augmented reality matures it is expected to change many things from how we work to how we play, learn and connect.

With the announcement recently that they were releasing ARKit 2.0, the third version of Apple’s developer platform for AR apps, the company is stepping up its commitment to the technology. Bank of America Merrill Lynch expects augmented reality to be an $8 billion “revenue opportunity” for Apple.

One of the drivers of Apple’s growth is expected to be AR apps that will “command a price premium” but also the additional sales of iPhones due to the new technology. Here are a few apps that are already deployed or are in prototype thanks to ARKit: Despite recent negative press, Facebook is still popular and has a tremendous reach on its platforms—more than 1.3 billion users on Messenger, 2 billion on Facebook and 800 million on Instagram.

Facebook wants to make AR available to the masses and with their tremendous reach they already have a head start. It’s easier for people to experiment in AR with the app they already have—Facebook, Instagram, and Messenger—and they definitely expect to expand beyond face filters. Read more from…

thumbnail courtesy of