Apple’s billion devices provide a massive augmented reality edge over Google

“Later this year, Apple Inc. will put augmented reality software in as many as a billion mobile devices,” Alex Webb reports for Bloomberg. “Alphabet Inc.’s Google beat Apple by three years in releasing AR tools, but its features are on very few phones and haven’t gained wide acceptance. By contrast, Apple can easily pair its software and devices, an advantage that will help it quickly make up lost ground, developers say.”

“Apple last month lifted the lid on ARKit, the Cupertino, California-based company’s first foray into this field. The tool lets developers build AR applications for iPhones and iPads,” Webb reports. “Google revealed Tango, its AR software system, back in 2014, with the latest iteration showed off this January. Unlike ARKit, it requires infrared depth perception sensors, and there are currently only two mobile phones available with the technology: Lenovo Group Ltd.’s Phab 2 Pro and Asustek Computer Inc.’s ZenFone AR. Apple’s ARKit uses the iPhone’s existing hardware, such as the camera and gyroscope, to achieve similar ends.”

Read more in the full article here.

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Apple’s next-gen iPhone to feature rear-facing 3D laser for augmented reality and autofocus – July 13, 2017
Augmented Reality: Apple’s revolutionary offering leaves Google’s Android woefully behind – June 26, 2017
Apple’s AR is much closer to reality than Google’s – June 26, 2017
IKEA’s forthcoming Augmented Reality furniture app powered by Apple’s ARKit – June 19, 2017
Apple’s single most important WWDC 2017 announcement: ARKit – June 11, 2017
Apple CEO Cook discusses philosophy behind HomePod, ARKit’s potential market impact – June 6, 2017
Overnight, Apple will own the world’s largest augmented reality platform – June 7, 2017


  1. Hardly a billion of Apple’s devices support AR. I thought it was only A9-series processors and above that supported AR. We are likely talking about a couple of hundred millions of devices which are still a pretty decent number.

    It will be interesting to see how long Apple can stay ahead as Alphabet makes a push for Android hardware partners to churn out tens of millions of $100 smartphones which can support AR. Alphabet isn’t going sit back and let Apple stay in the AR lead without putting up a huge fight. Apple can never hold onto any lead they get because Alphabet is a much more aggressive company than Apple is.

    1. Everything released since the iPhone 6 (including iPads) will be able to support AR.

      iPhones/iPads sold since FY2014 (launch of iPhone 6) ~800 Million.

      Add projected FQ1/2018 iPhone and iPad unit sales and by the end of this calendar year there will be ~900 Million AR capable iOS devices in the wild.

      No matter how you calculate the AR capable base, the iOS platform base will lead the #2 player by about 10:1.

    2. Alphabet rushing out a half baked product that they know Apple is thoughtfully pursuing is par for the course.

      That is a very dead horse you are beating. Everyone knows that apple tries to take the appropriate amount of time to make sure a product actually works. Look at Samedung’s Bixby.

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