ARCore has arrived, and though it seems to be getting less press than ARKit did only a few weeks ago, it’s potentially even more impressive (tldr it works on walls and ceilings, not just horizontal surfaces). Given that we won’t have to wait for a new hardware release to start using it — Pixel and Samsung Note 8 users can (theoretically) already get their hands on it — that’s pretty exciting news.
We say theoretically because it’s still fresh enough that developers haven’t released apps to the public yet. There are a boatload of fun demos available, but not a one that you can download and try for yourself. This is disappointing given that, unlike ARKit, we aren’t waiting on a release to open it open to mass consumption. The few ARCore apps that seem to be floating around on Google Play don’t work (don’t waste your time), but hopefully in a couple of weeks that will start to change.
Here are some of the demos we’d like to see. Developers, go make us some fun things!
1) Cat Petting
It was a hilarious joke when someone made a cat petting simulator for VR, and now we want to see one for AR, too. While half the fun of petting a cat is the soft silky fur, we still think it would be fun to reach out and pretend to pet a virtual animal, and watch its reactions to our antics. You could even have a dog petting simulator where you could toss balls and have it fetch. It’s at least a $3 idea, no?
2) Hidden Messages
Someone already made this app, but no one used it, probably because the technology wasn’t ready. Images had to be too exactly identical in order to trigger, and a critical mass of users was never reached. So how much better is it with AR? We’ve got a version for Apple already (although at the time of writing H&T can’t remember what the demo was called, and it may not materialize into an app once these hit the market), so someone get on it and make the Android version so we can be just as cool as those i kids.
3) A Ryan Reynolds Filter
You hold up your phone, and every person around you magically turns into Ryan Reynolds! Or Jennifer Lawrence, but we’re pretty sure everyone’s day would be made better by being surrounded by Ryan Reynolds, regardless of orientation. This would require some basic facial recognition, and the ability to render pretty quickly, as Ryan would obviously have to move at the same pace as the people he was replacing. We know you can do it!
4) Cryptocurrency Converter
This app would keep track of all mentions of cryptocurrency, and create a shower of coins in response. Visual and auditory mentions both work! Tap to collect the coins, and see if you, too, can be a huge investor in the newest virtual currency. Except in this case, the currency is literally virtual, and you can neither trade nor collect it. That’s right, the coins vanish as soon as you put your hands on it (kind of like the value of most cryptocurrencies). It’s a lot easier than mining bitcoins, and while the coins you collect won’t turn into real-world currency, they’re way more fun to gather.
5) Virtual Houseplant
Tired of killing your office plants? Is a tamagochi just too much of a commitment? Someone out there needs to make a virtual plant. You can water it once a week, and other than that… you just look at it. It stays where you left it, it doesn’t play games, and it slowly thrives under your complete lack of attention. Feel like you created life without having to put any actual effort in! You can even name it. H&T is going with Theo.
Written by Wren Handman for www.hammerandtusk.com.