What Apple's new AR bowling game taught us about the future

CNET | 6/6/2019 | Scott Stein
Les7799 (Posted by) Level 3
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A giant bowling game showed us the best features of ARKit 3.

I'm scrambling around a wooden floor, trying to fend off a giant virtual ball with my iPad Pro. It's a bowling alley, but it feels like a basketball court. A crowd cheers. Eli faces off across from me, pushing his iPad Pro forward, launching the ball at my face. I lose my footing. The ball shoots past me. I run after it. Too late. The pins were knocked down. I lost. Again.

Court - Test - IPads - Ball - Pins

But we're on a big court that's totally empty, except for us and our test iPads. We see the big ball, bowling pins, and us, running around among these things as if they're in our shared space. Welcome to Apple's imminent AR future: fast-paced, collaborative, and... still, headset-free.

While Microsoft has HoloLens 2 and Magic Leap has its magic AR goggles, Apple -- like Google -- is exploring augmented reality through flat screens. But while Google's recent AR efforts focus on utility and quick assistance, Apple is pushing even more realistic graphics and effects. Apple unleashed a number of AR tools at its WWDC developer conference that are coming this fall, including a whole AR-making toolkit called Reality Composer. ARKit 3, which needs a recent A12-equipped iPhone or iPad to do its most impressive effects, is what Swift Strike is meant to show off. And it shows how far things have come in a year.

Multiplayer - AR - Game - Space - Year

It's a multiplayer AR game, much like the one I played in this same space a year ago that had me knocking down blocks on a table with a ball. But that game last year was pretty stationary. This time, I ran around a far larger area, and so did my opponent (Eli Blumenthal, who's never played an AR game quite like this before).

I came...
(Excerpt) Read more at: CNET
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