Mixed Reality

How To Create An Augmented Reality Experience 2023 Expert Guide

Want to learn how to create an augmented reality experience? This guide will help you craft the perfect experience when working with AR.


Aidan Shaw


Jan 27, 2023

How To Create An Augmented Reality Experience | 2023 Expert Guide

In the age of technology, augmented reality (AR) is becoming increasingly commonplace. AR lets users see digital or interactive images and graphics integrated into the real world, creating exciting new experiences for customers, learners, and businesses. For those wanting to get their feet wet in this emerging field of immersive visual narrative, it’s essential to understand its fundamentals before constructing your custom solution.

Walk with us to get informed on all the essential components of creating augmented reality apps from scratch – from understanding user contexts and needs to executing efficient development tactics. Read on for an informative journey, one that promises both a stimulating process of learning and engaging output.

Defining Augmented reality

Augmented reality is a technology that enhances the real-world environment with digital information and interactive 3D elements. It overlays digital content such as images, videos, text, and animations onto the user's view of the natural world, creating an enhanced and immersive experience. This digital content is usually accessed via a smartphone or tablet device but can also be viewed through specialized glasses or headsets.

The Essence Of AR In 2023 - Necessity Of Today

The world is becoming increasingly digitized, and augmented reality provides a gateway to the future of interactive technology. AR provides users with enhanced features to interact with digital information that would otherwise be beyond their reach. AR introduces a new level of immersive experiences from education to corporate training that can benefit people in many aspects.

  • By offering real-time interaction and visual feedback, AR makes learning more interactive, enabling us to understand key concepts better.
  • The augmented reality market is increasing day by day and now businesses are using it for product design & manufacturing training, and marketing.
  • With the help of AR, companies can give potential customers realistic virtual demonstrations of products and services before they purchase them, further increasing their satisfaction while providing tangible benefits to businesses.
  • AR has the potential to improve our lives significantly by introducing smoother ways of accessing and experiencing digital media, making it increasingly accessible while being more engaging than ever before.

Augmented Reality App Development Steps

To create a successful AR experience with AR apps, there are some key steps you will need to follow.

Idea And Concept Development 

In AR app development, first, you must create an idea or concept. This involves brainstorming, researching, planning, and outlining the desired features of the app. Depending on the project's complexity, it may involve stakeholders representing different departments to ensure that everyone involved has a unified vision for the end product. The goal is to thoroughly understand what the app should be capable of doing and how users will interact with it.

Design And Prototyping 

The next step is to create a prototype for AR development. This involves using various design tools such as mockups, wireframes, and diagrams to visualize what it would look like when completed. The designer must also consider user experience elements such as navigation and flow and aesthetics like font choice and color palettes. It’s essential to have a working prototype ready before moving on to development so that any changes can be made upfront rather than implemented after development has already begun.

Development And Testing 

Once the prototype is finalized, it’s time to start developing the code for the AR app. This requires selecting a platform compatible with hardware components, such as cameras or sensors, and augmented reality SDK, along with programming languages, such as Java or C++. Once development begins, it’s important to continually test and refine features while keeping track of any bugs that need fixing before deployment. 

Deployment And Maintenance 

After augmented reality development, the final step is deploying the application into its designated environment where users can use it. AR app developers now ensure that all necessary hardware components are installed correctly and set up any accounts associated with third-party services required for use within the app. Once deployed, frequent updates should be released to fix bugs and add new features based on user feedback; this helps keep users engaged while ensuring that the application remains relevant over time.

How Augmented Reality Works?

Augmented Reality (AR) works by using a device such as a smartphone, tablet, or specialized glasses to overlay digital information onto the user's view of the real world. The device's camera captures the real-world environment, and the AR software processes the image, adding digital content.

What Are The 3 Key Elements of Augmented Reality?

1. Computer Vision: This is the technology that enables computers to recognize and interact with objects in the physical world. Computer vision algorithms are used to determine the location, shape, and 3D structure of an object in a given environment.

2. Tracking & Mapping: AR applications use tracking and mapping technologies to create an accurate model of a physical space and the objects within it. This allows for more accurate interactions between virtual and physical objects in an AR experience.

3. Interactivity: This is the technology used to create a seamless connection between the real world and digital content, allowing for natural user interactions. Interactivity technologies include gesture recognition, voice control, haptic feedback, and eye-tracking.

Together, these three elements make up the fundamental components of an augmented reality experience that allows for digital content to be seamlessly overlaid on the physical world. Without them, any AR experience would be limited in its capabilities and interaction potential. By utilizing computer vision, tracking and mapping, and interactivity technologies together, applications can create immersive AR experiences that bring digital content to life in the physical world.

Marker-Based Tracking

Marker-based tracking is a technique used in AR applications. It requires the user to display a specific visual marker, such as a QR code, which the AR application uses to determine the device's position in relation to it. This enables the application to accurately place virtual or digital objects in the real-world environment. The marker acts as a reference point, allowing the augmented reality system to know where it should display its information and images.

Marker-based tracking also typically requires powerful hardware components, such as high-speed processors, GPUs, and specialized cameras, along with robust software that can recognize and track markers at different angles and distances.

Markerless Tracking

As opposed to marker-based tracking, markerless tracking does not require any physical object for use as a reference point. Instead, this type of tracking uses computer vision algorithms to detect features in the environment, such as edges or corners of objects or walls. The AR application then uses these features as anchor points for placing augmented reality objects or displaying information about them.

Markerless tracking is advantageous over marker-based tracking because there is no need for physical markers or dedicated hardware components like cameras. Instead, a device with an onboard processor and camera can capture images from which feature points can be identified, and you can place virtual objects. Projection and location-based AR apps come under the umbrella of markless tracking.

Projection-Based AR

Projection-based AR works by projecting an immersive light onto any flat surface, users can gain a realistic understanding of how objects look and interact in real life while Simultaneous Localization and Mapping tracking capture every movement they make with it. From boardroom presentations that come alive right before your eyes to gaming experiences where you can play alongside your favorite characters - this revolutionary technology has become essential for countless activities.

Location-Based AR

With location-based augmented reality, you can explore beyond what is visible with the naked eye. Popularized by games like Pokémon GO, this innovative form pairs physical spaces with digital imagery to bring immersive experiences to your fingertips. Hunt for in-game characters while discovering new places around town. Location-based AR gives users an enticing way to interact with their environment!

Overlay AR

Overlay AR is a form of augmented reality that allows users to place digital content onto physical objects. This technology can be used in retail, home decorating, and more. With Overlay AR, you can measure items like furniture with precision, view 3D models of products on shelves and even swap colors between real-life objects using your device. This is the customization of already present things into virtual objects.

Computer Vision Algorithms 

Computer vision algorithms are among the most important elements of augmented reality technology. They enable devices to interpret what they see through their cameras and understand how they should respond accordingly. These algorithms combine image processing techniques with machine learning models to identify features within an image or video stream, such as lines, shapes, or textures and then match them against stored representations of those features (such as 3D models).

This allows devices to recognize objects within their field of view so that they can interact intelligently – for example, identifying when someone has picked up an object they could then interact with using voice commands or gestures.


For an augmented reality system to work effectively, it needs access to additional sensory data, too – usually from GPS sensors within smartphones or other mobile devices (although there are also dedicated AR headsets with built-in sensors). This helps ensure that virtual content is placed accurately within its physical environment so that users can interact with it correctly.

For example, if you had an Android device running Google’s Project Tango, it would detect your location precisely even indoors thanks to its integrated motion sensors and computer vision algorithms – enabling you to play games on tabletops or explore virtual worlds projected onto walls around you.  

Output Devices

Augmented reality applications need output devices to work. It is usually some display technology, but this could also include speakers/headphones/haptic feedback devices, depending on what kind of experience you want your users to have.

For example, suppose you were creating a game. In that case, you may want users to be able to hear sound effects coming from different directions based on where they are moving their device. At the same time, in another scenario, you could incorporate haptic feedback so that users can feel when something happens – such as when they pick up an item during gameplay or shoot at something on screen during an AR shooting game, etc. The output devices must be capable of quickly displaying dynamic AR content for users to perceive changes and respond accordingly before something happens.

What Is Needed To Create An Augmented Reality Experience?

You will need a developer who has experience in creating augmented reality applications, as well as a reliable device with an AR-capable camera. In addition to the development skills, you will need a 3D graphics engine and some form of data processing that can interpret and manipulate the image data collected by the camera. More advanced applications may require additional technology such as computer vision algorithms or marker-based tracking systems. Finally, the user interface will require some form of the graphical user interface to make it easy for users to interact with their augmented reality environment. All these elements come together to create a unified experience in augmented reality that can be used to view digital content in physical settings or perform other tasks such as navigation, data visualization and more.

1. A developer who has experience in creating augmented reality applications

2. Reliable device with an AR-capable camera

3.3D graphics engine and some form of data processing that can interpret and manipulate the image data collected by the camera.

4. UI and UX - people to make it look pretty and make the process go smooth

5. Someone who knows AR graphical user interfaces to make it easy for users to interact with their augmented reality environment.

What Software is Used for Augmented Reality?

Augmented reality can be created using a variety of software platforms, including Unity3D, Vuforia, ARToolKit and more. Depending on the complexity of the project, developers may need to use different combinations of these platforms in order to create an effective augmented reality experience. For example, Unity3D is often used for 3D graphics, while Vuforia is used for marker-based tracking and computer vision algorithms. In addition to the software platforms, developers may need to integrate additional APIs or SDKs depending on their project requirements. All these elements come together to create an effective augmented reality experience that can be used to view digital content in physical settings or perform other tasks such as navigation, data visualization and more.

1. Unity3D

2. Vuforia

3. ARToolKit

4. Additional APIs or SDKs depending on project requirements.  

5. Computer vision algorithms or marker-based tracking systems (optional)

6. Graphical user interface (GUI) to make it easier for users to interact with their augmented reality environment (optional)

7. Data processing to interpret and manipulate the image data collected by the camera (optional).  

8. 3D graphics engine (optional).

9. Online services to host the application and deliver its content in a secure manner (optional).

10. Server-side analytics tools to monitor user engagement with the application (optional).  

11. Testing frameworks to ensure that the application works as intended on different devices and operating

How long does it take to create an AR experience?

The amount of time it takes to create an AR experience depends on the complexity of the project. Simple applications can be developed within a few days or weeks, while more complex projects may require months or even years for development, testing and deployment. It is important to factor in all aspects of the project when creating an accurate timeline, including design and UX, development, testing, and hosting. Additionally, factors such as the complexity of the application, number of platforms it needs to be available on, or resources required for server-side processing can all affect the total amount of time needed to create a successful augmented reality experience.

Finally, developers should also account for additional elements such as online services, server-side analytics tools, and testing frameworks that may be required for the AR experience. These elements can increase the amount of time needed to develop an AR experience, but they also help ensure that it is delivered in a secure manner and properly monitored. All these factors must be taken into consideration when estimating the timeline for creating an augmented reality experience.

Is it hard to create augmented reality?

No, it's not hard, creating augmented reality can be complex and may require a certain level of technical expertise. However, with the right set of tools and knowledge, it is possible to create engaging and interactive augmented reality experiences.

With specific apps  such as Vuforia and Unity3D, users can easily access the necessary tools to create their own augmented reality projects. These platforms provide step-by-step tutorials and comprehensive documentation that help guide developers through the process of creating an AR experience. Additionally, there are many more resources available like BTW and others online that provide advice on how to create a successful AR experience.

Creating augmented reality can be a challenging but rewarding experience. With the right tools and knowledge, developers can create immersive and engaging AR experiences that bring digital content to life in physical settings.

How Much Does it Cost to Create an Augmented Reality Experience?

The cost of creating an augmented reality experience varies based on the complexity of the project and the resources needed for development. Simple projects may cost a few hundred dollars to create, while more complex projects can run into thousands or even millions of dollars. Factors such as server-side processing, 3D graphics engines, online services, and testing frameworks can all affect the total cost of development.

If you don’t have access to the necessary resources for development, it can be beneficial to outsource part or all of your AR project. This can help reduce costs, but it is important to ensure that whoever you choose has experience in creating successful augmented reality projects.

Creating an augmented reality experience can be a costly endeavor, but with the right tools and resources it is possible to create an engaging and rewarding AR experience. It is important to factor in all aspects of development when creating a budget for your project, including design and UX, development, testing, hosting, online services, and server-side analytics tools (optional). With the right planning and resources, developers can create a successful augmented reality experience without breaking the bank.

Contact BTW if you need help.

Change The Way You See With AR Experience!

Augmented reality is an exciting and rapidly growing technology that has the potential to revolutionize the way people interact with their environment. By understanding the different augmented reality tools available for creating cool experiences and following some essential tips, you can create successful augmented reality apps that provide users with meaningful interactions and engaging experiences.

Additionally, you can create high-quality AR experiences tailored to your business needs with professionals like us. With a competent partner, you can access an industry-accepted software development kit to create AR apps with the assistance of qualified AR app developers. Building augmented reality apps is now easier with the right tools. So, test your creativity and enjoy the future.


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