Augmented Reality Is the Future of Digital Experiences: Pre-Order Adobe’s AR Authoring App Aero

Aero is Adobe’s first app that allows you to create and view augmented reality experiences.

by Elizabeth Barelli

posted on 10-25-2019

Ever wondered what Ikea, Bjork, Sephora, and Pokémon all have in common? They all harnessed augmented reality to create boundary-pushing experiences for their audiences. Whether you yourself have ever played with augmented reality or not, the time is definitely now to start. AR is all around us, and it’s more than just a new type of app; it’s a new playground for digital content and a new canvas for all artists. It’s the way of the future, and everyone can take advantage of it.

When I was a child, the idea of turning a dream into reality was only something conceivable in an animated Disney film. A hero would rub a magic lamp, a genie would come out offering three wishes, and your wildest visions would come to life. Who hasn’t, in their mind’s eye, played with that possibility and imagined what would happen?

Fast-forward two decades later, and another version of Aladdin has hit screens with some impressive VFX technology, bringing this fantasy a bit closer to the world we live in. The entertainment and gaming industries have continued to experience continuous innovation, mostly powered by new forms of 3D fine art, and this is only the beginning. Augmented reality (AR) is enabling digital content to go beyond the screen by expanding it into our 360* field of view and grounding it into the physical world. Sound exciting? It is. We are entering a new paradigm shift for digital experiences, and Adobe Aero, Adobe’s first AR authoring tool now available for pre-order, will change the game.

The case for immersive experiences

Let’s rewind for a moment. AR has been a so-called hot topic for a few years, and aside from a few popular gaming apps, like Pokemon Go (downloaded 1 billion times) and others, it has been unclear for a while how AR would really change people’s lives. But we are now at a turning point. There are over 1 billion AR enabled smartphones in the hands of consumers that, unlike VR headsets, are conveniently carried around in our pockets. It goes without saying that the breadth of AR wearable devices makes the opportunity even more considerable. As the technology is now within reach, the demand from consumers for AR and immersive experiences is also rising.

The most important thing to understand about the potential of AR is to go back to the unique value it brings to the people experiencing it. Unlike with video content on a screen, where the spectator’s attention can vary, AR puts the audience at the center and gives them an active role. This interactivity can also create more complex scenarios and involve the audience in decision making that helps unfold the story. This is how AR creates a higher level of engagement and appreciation from the audience, leaving them transformed, moved, or simply giving them new perspective on a topic.

More and more artists are using AR to convey thought provoking ideas, to blur the lines between the physical and the virtual world. AR, and other mixed reality media, will become the perfect alchemy of art and science to meet the rising demand for immersive experiences. AR will revolutionize the space of education, culture, and leisure by integrating information in the user journey. For too long, the world of experiences has been held back by the limits of a physical devices. Now it’s possible to connect the same webs of content and information with the physical world itself.

A medium, a channel, and a tool

Businesses are quickly adopting new AR technology. Deloitte’s 2018 report on technology trends found that the majority of people are experimenting with AR to help grow their businesses. AR is already making a difference because it helps you prototype more quickly, while also solving real tangible consumer issues, especially in a world where transactions happen more and more online. AR enables customers to visualize things wherever they are, in space and sometimes on their own bodies and faces, allowing them to get a sense of whether a product is going to meet their needs. Whether it’s furniture or sunglasses, there is an opportunity to get one step closer to customer satisfaction while reducing return rates, saving millions in the process.

Of course, the best way to fully seize the potential of AR to push creative boundaries is to experience it directly. In today’s world, AR authoring tools can be unapproachable or incompatible with a creator’s work. At Adobe, we wanted to create a solution that would empower creatives to expand the artwork they already have with the design systems that they already know, to access the new medium and be part of the next generation of immersive content.

The saying ‘seeing is believing’ has never rung so true. AR as a medium has the power to create more engaging and true-to-life experiences that better showcase and sell a concept, brand, or story.

For our Creative Cloud audience, this concept can be used in many ways throughout the creative process:

Last year, we launched Adobe Aero, then Project Aero, as a private beta. Within weeks, we were honored to have a waiting list of tens of thousands of applicants. This summer we introduced it to a few super users in the context of Adobe’s first Make it Immersive summit. Our entire team: engineers, researchers, designers, product leaders, and established artists in residence have poured their heart into this exciting mission to build something new and true to Adobe’s values: a best-in-class tool for creatives to design and share interactive immersive stories, no coding skills required. We are ready to make that a reality too.

Adobe Aero is now available for pre-order, and will be available soon to everyone, so don’t skip a beat.

Get ready to bring your wildest ideas to life.

Topics: Creativity, 3D & AR, Design

Products: Creative Cloud