Every time a human endeavour is started, a natural behaviour is to try to figure it out what to do with it or how to do it. In the case of augmented reality (AR), this can be witnesses with the current state of SDKs for AR, at least there are 20, all of them good.
In case you’re wondering, SDK (software development kit) are the tools some institution, person or company provide to develop -generally- software for something. So in AR case, many of them are offering SDK in hope many developers use them to generate AR. The more use an specific SDK has, the more popular it becomes, then the more prevalence it has and in the end the more possibility of at least not dying, at best making commercial success (i.e. making money).
Lets look back
If we take an step back in human history, specifically during or after the industrial revolution, this has happen time and time again. When the car was created, it wasn’t the same or similar between them, some of it had roof, other didn’t, some of them had lights others not. It wasn’t until Henry Ford figured a way to mass produce them, that an standard started to rise in cars.
Same with electricity, initially there was the DC/AC confrontation, mainly between Edison (General Electric, DC camp) and Tesla (Westinghouse, AC camp). It wasn’t until Tesla (hence Westinghouse) was able to expand electricity everywhere easily (thanks to his invention: the transformer), that the electricity became common place in most countries in the world.
Lets fast forward with personal computers. During the late 70’s, when personal computers started to appear, Apple, Commodore, Atari, Sinclair, etc. they all used their own operating system. It wasn’t until a little company called Microsoft was able to figure it out how to mass produce software, that the eventual standard arise, today known as Windows.
If we fast forward again to the 90’s, mobile phones had the same behaviour. Motorola, NOKIA, Hyundai, Ericsson, Samsung, they all made the operating system (OS) for their mobile phones, eventually some of them consolidating into Symbian (created as a defensive measure for Microsoft entering the smartphone market). That until the iPhone came out, in which, with Android cleared things out and that’s where we stand today.
So, maybe the lesson here to figure it out how to mass produce AR, in order for that technology (SDK) to become an standards to later be massively adopted.
Which company will be?
We are still trying to figure it out 🙂