HOW TO WRITE THE BEST AUGMENTED REALITY APP DEVELOPMENT BRIEF IN 2024 AND TEMPLATE
Learn how to write a professional Augmented Reality (AR) App Development Brief with the below best tips, ideas and premium template in 2024.
By Mau, an AR app enthusiast and Senior Digital Marketing Specialist at eDigital.
DEVELOPMENT AND USAGE OF AR APPLICATIONS ARE ON THE RISE
Demand for augmented reality (Also called: “extended reality”, “assisted reality” or “mixed reality”) apps spiked since the start of the pandemic as marketers needed new ways to serve customers. Now, it has been predicted the worldwide AR market will grow 14X in five years and will reach $140b in 2025.
Examples of companies embracing Augmented Reality apps are abundant.
- Adobe‘s Photoshop neural filters and Krisp noise cancellation app (Webby’s Awards 2022 winners in the “Best use of AI and machine learning” category)
- Warby Parker’s virtual vision test
- Beauty and Fashion marketing’s AR smart mirrors are significantly improving their accuracy helping them win new customers. An example of this is the Men’s Warehouse virtual changing room
- Magic Leap is developing realistic-looking customer service agents and bots. Mercedes-Benz technicians are using Microsoft’s HoloLens headsets for remote assistance. Envisics is working to revolutionise the in-car experience with holographic technology.
- General Informatics is developing AR tools for police departments
- Mira uses AR headsets to offer users an immersive view of industrial environments, like explosive-grade chemical manufacturing, and military equipment maintenance.
- Others are developing new tools for recruiting talent and hosting virtual concerts.
- Medivis offers advanced medical imaging to medical Centres; Surgical Theater develops AR apps to train doctors and walk patients through procedures before they happen, and XRHealth offers virtual reality clinics.
BEFORE WRITING YOUR AUGMENTED REALITY DEVELOPMENT BRIEF
UNDERSTAND WHAT AUGMENTED REALITY IS
If you’ve already played Niantic’s Pokemon Go, tried decorating your bedroom using the IKEA app, sent a selfie using a Snapchat filter or used the L’Oreal app to check different make-up colours, then you have had a brief encounter with Augmented Reality.
The connected world is expanding and adding an extra layer of information to modern physical lives. The latest advances in technology also have driven people to entirely new environments and virtual worlds.
All types of industries and businesses are now using Augmented Reality.
Some now common applications include:
- Advertising (Outdoor displays)
- Architecture and building
- Art installations and Museums
- Automobile (Car dealers’ AR demos)
- Books (Publishing)
- Education (In the Classroom)
- Exhibitions (Photobooths and demonstrations at trade shows)
- Gaming (Virtual and AR games)
- Graphic Design, illustration, logo, icon, business cards, brochures, packaging and poster design and typography.
- Home renovations (Flooring, decoration)
- Retail Luxury High Fashion (Hair, Makeup, Clothing, Sneakers)
- Sports (Hawk-eye tech for on-field decision making), athlete training, sports broadcasting.
- Tourism (City Guides, National Park Guides, and maps)
It is now possible to explore virtually, from gaming to finding new business opportunities, and these all are done through the evolution of Augmented Reality (AR). In recent years, the growth of AR applications enables users, teams and consumers to visualise products and experience the service before actually purchasing it.
AUGMENTED REALITY VS. VIRTUAL REALITY – WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE?
The main key difference between Augmented reality (AR) and Virtual reality (VR) is that Augmented reality (AR) brings digital elements to a live view often by using the camera on a smartphone or AR glasses while Virtual reality (VR) does not use elements in the physical work.
In other words…
- Virtual reality replaces your vision while Augmented reality adds to it.
- AR adds to reality, projecting information on top of what you’re already seeing while Virtual reality shuts down the real world to immerse you into a new sensorial dimension you probably have never experienced.
An example of a great Virtual Reality App is RecRoom (available on iOS, PC, PlayStation, Steam and Oculus), which is accessible without a VR headset — the main barrier to entry for most people.
HOW DOES AUGMENTED REALITY WORK?
Augmented reality typically presents a view of the physical real-world environment with superimposed computer-generated images, changing the perception of reality. AR technology alters and enhances people’s perceptions of their physical surroundings when seen through a particular device. The scope of this technology is limitless as the world of technology is continuously evolving.
While augmented reality provides fun and interactive ways for global users to learn, experience, and imagine new things, it also allows many applications for enterprises and entrepreneurs.
WHY AUGMENTED REALITY FOR MARKETING?
According to a Statista report, the Augmented Reality market across the globe is predicted to be around USD$198 billion in 2025.
AR is highly beneficial for marketing and is emerging as a useful tool for businesses and marketers. It allows them to transform the way customers observe their surroundings. AR-based apps quickly engage customers with their interactivity and can render immersive user experiences.
TYPES OF AUGMENTED REALITY APPLICATIONS
If you have been wondering how to integrate AR into your new app project, you can do it in one of the following ways:
- Location-based AR Apps. AR apps that track locations are termed “location-based” applications. Location-based apps rely mostly on GPS, accelerometer or digital compass data. Pokemon Go uses GPS data to determine the user’s location and decide whether or not to show him a Pokemon. The location-based approach to augmented reality is perfect for developing city tours or navigation applications.
- Object-based AR Apps. Object-based also called marker-based AR technology has diverse applications. Object-based AR or recognition-based AR provides detailed information about an object, after performing object recognition. It senses the object in front of the camera and offers on-screen information. An example of this is the Google Lens app. Markers may be codes, physical objects or printed images. Thomas Cook travel company, for example, offers digital content with a marker-based AR app, in addition to printed materials.
- SLAM. Simultaneous Localization and Mapping (SLAM) software easily identifies objects around the user. SLAM technology makes use of complex algorithms to identify colours, patterns and other characteristics of physical objects. Slam technology is the most modern one and requires high-end software.
Tools such as Niantic’s Lightship are empowering creators to seamlessly bring virtual content and experiences into the real world. Niantic Lightship currently supports hundreds of millions of users through a client platform that sets standards for AR, using segmented semantics, mapping, and multiplayer technology.
HOW TO WRITE THE BEST AUGMENTED REALITY APP DEVELOPMENT BRIEF 2024 + TEMPLATE
STEP 1: BRAINSTORM IDEAS FOR YOUR AUGMENTED REALITY APP
- Employee participation. An AR app can come to life as part of an internal process in which employees submit their ideas. The ideas can be whittled down to 50, then 10 ideas. These 1o ideas can then be pitched to a panel of judges involving company executives, including the CEO.
POPULAR AUGMENTED REALITY EXAMPLES
It is a good idea to benchmark current AR executions not only within your industry but in different industries. You may want to try different AR executions on different AR devices and software.
Once you have experienced a bunch of great AR apps then you will be in a better position to know what you want and what you do NOT want as part of your new AR project. Also, the conversation with your developer will become so much easier as you can include parts of other AR executions you like.
Below are just a few Augmented reality examples
- ENVISICS AR-HUD Driveless car AR demo.
- Google lens
- HoloLens 2
- Ikea place
- Just a line by Google.
- L’ORÉAL virtual hair and makeup app.
- Quarantour AR app by Ream Estate music band. Band’s fans can go to the app’s webpage or use their iOS or Android device and place a 3D concert stage wherever they like providing there’s a flat surface.
- wallARy Augmented Reality App. This app helps users find the right pictures for their walls.
- Warby Parker virtual fashion try-on app.
STEP 2: UNDERSTAND THE BRIEFING PROCESS FOR AN AUGMENTED REALITY APP
It is important to understand how your Augmented Reality App Developer works. Below is the most common process to bring your AR app to live:
- Sign NDA. Most developers know the value of privacy & confidentiality of the information your AR project offers. To maintain utter transparency, a developer will sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) with you. Your AR project will be safe from being mentioned to your competitors.
- Provide background and context. Your AR developing partner should have some insights into the driving force behind your desire for an AR app project, why you are doing it, what you trying to achieve and how has it come about. Critically, you should provide an idea of budget thresholds, as this allows the AR developer to work within the realms of what is feasible. Without any budget indication, your developer may propose ideas that are outside of what you are prepared to pay, meaning disappointment if you can’t go with the option suggested.
- Requirements gathering process. Through an effective AR App brief document, your developer team will study and analyze your requirements.
- AR development software to be used (aka SDK Software Development Kit). Ask your developer about the pros and cons of the selected software and how it may affect future versions of your app or the execution on different devices: AR glasses, TVs, desktops and phones. Some of the most popular AR software include Amazon Sumerian, Apple’s ARKit, Google’s ARCore, HP Reveal, Vuforia Engine and Zap Works among others.
- Timeframes and deadlines. The only way to manage expectations is to make sure that you are clear on the timeframes and deadlines. Expectations cannot be managed if dates have not been communicated. By giving clear deadlines, work can be prioritised and successfully organised. It is also important to have realistic expectations. By providing a detailed brief, your AR partner can provide a more accurate timescale for work to be completed.
- Ballpark estimation approval. After getting a brief of the AR project scope, a rough cost estimation should be sent to you. Your developer will need your approval on the same to move ahead.
- Full project feature list and cost bifurcation. After getting approval on the rough estimation, your AR App developer will ask for all the project details which will help them make a full-fledged AR App project feature list and cost bifurcation.
- Final proposal. Once you approve the Full Project featured list, you should be set to sign the final contract document which will have all the tiny details of the project scope, Cost bifurcation and milestones.
- UI/UX design (optional). At this stage, your AR App designer will start designing all the user interfaces and user experiences of your new app. Your AR App designer should be able to present you with some UI/UX frames/sketches for you to confirm and approve.
- Prototype. The above stage (UI/UX Design) is optional as there are now great prototyping software tools that allow designers to design and prototype ( make functional) at the same time. With a single click, this prototyping software mirrors the mobile operating system you are working on and then you just drag and drop functionality into them.
- App development. Once you are happy with the basic look and functionality of your prototype, then your AR App developer should start building your AR App.
- Quality assurance. This is a very important state to test and make sure there are no issues with your app.
- Deployment/launch. At this stage, your AR App developer will deploy and launch your AR App.
- Support & maintenance. Initial support for your launched app should be the top priority when negotiating your SLAs (Service Level Agreements) as there might be things to fix that were not forecasted in previous stages.
STEP 3: CHOOSING THE RIGHT AUGMENTED REALITY DESIGNER / COMPANY / PROVIDER
- Does the company have examples of AR apps they have built?
- Are they keen to suggest ways to enhance your app with emerging technologies and additional interactivity?
- Are they willing to consider a potentially impossible concept, and find a way to make it a reality?
- How do they deliver sound? Do they offer standard sound or can they deliver a more immersive 3D spacial sound that can be anchored to a virtual object?
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Great template
The template was a lifesaver for briefing developers about my first augmented reality app needs. Thank you.
Sophie L. ✅ Verified user
TOP 6 THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN BRIEFING ABOUT YOUR AUGMENTED REALITY DESIGN MOBILE APP PROJECT
- Will your augmented reality mobile app need to run on both Android and iOS?
WHAT IS YOUR INTENDED APP NAME
- The app name can be decided at any point during the process. Sometimes it’s a good idea to decide a name early to see if it is available, but this is not necessary until it’s time to publish the app.
- Define a realistic budget required for an Augmented Reality app. This is important to know before delving into exciting concept discussions, which can be time-consuming.
- Your AR Mobile App designer would love to know the budget so they can assist in designing the app accordingly.
- Will you be providing User Interface graphics for every screen of the finished app?
- Can you supply the Pantone colours & high-resolution logos for your app?
- Will you provide specifications for these graphics?
Write down a general description & notes about your AR app concept.
DESCRIPTION OF AUGMENTED REALITY EXPERIENCES
- Do you want your augmented reality mobile app to be markerless or marker?
- If markers how many?
- Do you have the artwork for the markers ready?
- What are the markers? It is best practice to provide a brief description.
- Brief description of models. You should include how many models you need.
- Do you have the 3D models ready?
Do you require concept art sketches for the models?
How would you like the 3D models to appear? example: appear instantly? rise from a portal or animated entrance?
- Would you like sound effects, music, or narration for the 3D models? Describe as much as you can
- Will you be providing these audio files?
- Will the 3D models be animated?
- Approximately how long will each animation be? Less than 30sec 30sec-1min 1min or more
- Describe the animation for each model
- Would you like any of your AR experiences to offer video playing?
How will videos play? Transition to a full-screen video playing See a floating screen with your video playing? Both?
- Tap to activate a link or download.
- How many interactive buttons will you need? Website? Social Media? Video? Document? Other?
- Will you need the 3D models to be interactive? You should describe the interactivity required
- Are there any additional special functions that you would like to include in your app? Gaming Camera/selfies Competition/coupon/promo/GeoLocation?
CHOSEN SDK THAT HANDLES – AT LEAST – YOUR “MUST-HAVE” REQUIREMENTS
Let’s have a look at some of the most powerful SDKs and frameworks for building AR apps.
ARKit is a framework developed by Apple that has now grown into a solid tool considered one of the biggest iOS AR platforms. ARKit provides a developer with 4 key tools to make an augmented reality app.
- RealityKit helps integrate photorealistic rendering and camera motion effects with a native Swift API.
- Reality Composer – a drag-and-drop tool that facilitates building interactive environments. With a library of objects and animations, it’s available for iPhone and Mac users.
- People Occlusion is a tool to layer virtual content in front of and behind people.
- Motion Capture can track the arms, legs, head or torso of a person in real time.
This is Google’s platform for you to build your own AR app. ARCore offers three key tools to integrate virtual content with the real world:
- Motion tracking allows a device to understand and track its position relative to the world.
- Environmental understanding can discover the location and size of different surfaces, e.g. vertical, horizontal and angled like the ground, a table or a wall.
- Light estimation allows the device to estimate the environment’s current lighting conditions.
Vuforia is an enterprise AR platform with several augmented reality tools and solutions. Top features include:
- Dynamic Object Recognition. Perceives images, 3D models and environments, offering development flexibility;
- Vuforia Studio allows the release of scalable AR experiences that transform manufacturing, service and training processes – without the need for extensive programming.
- An online storage solution for large-scale AR projects. You’ll be able to host up to 100,000 target images to enable fast, reliable and scalable cloud-based AR experiences;
- Code-free augmented reality editor helps manage, test and publish AR content; no programming skills are required.
EasyAR is a cross-platform SDK (for both – Android and iOS users) to develop an augmented reality application. Key features:
- Sparse SpatialMap allows scanning the environment to build 3D point clouds in real time.
- Dense SpatialMap allows the production of a 3D mesh.
- Motion and surface tracking allow the tracking device’s position relative to the world and the environmental structure.
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⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ Useful template
The template helped us define key aspects we needed to consider when briefing our developer agency. It was really useful and saved us time. Thank you.
Oliver T. ✅ Verified user
THE TOP 9 AUGMENTED REALITY TOOLS
- EasyAR. A mobile application and an augmented reality engine that makes AR easier.
- Layar. Find various items based on augmented reality technology.
- Lens Studio. Create, publish, and share your own AR experiences for Snapchat with or without code.
- Lightform. A design tool for projected AR.
- Spark AR Studio. Free for Mac only. Сreate AR experiences for Instagram without code.
- Unity. Build high-quality 3D and 2D games and deploy them across mobile, desktop and VR/AR.
- Vectary. Сreate 3D and AR for your website.
- Vuforia. SDK for mobile devices that enables the creation of augmented reality applications.
- Wikitude. Empowers your iOS, Android & Smart Glasses apps with image and object tracking, instant tracking (SLAM), geo AR and more.
THE TOP 10 AR APP DEVELOPERS
- Hyperlink Infosystem
- Zco Corporation
- Imobdev Technologies
- Credencys Solution
- Creatiosoft Solution
- Y media Labs
AR AND VR EFFECT & FILTER CREATORS
- Laura Gouillon. Laura is an AR/VR effects creator who has worked in cinematic VR filmmaking, built AR/VR effects for TikTok and AR tools as a product manager at Unity and collaborated with NASA (Nasa is one of the top 10 most popular brands on Instagram). Now, Laura is an independent AR/VR creator—and the designer of nearly 200 augmented reality effects. Chances are, you’ve already seen or heard one of those effects on TikTok. Since joining TikTok’s in-beta Effect House to build and launch AR tools for TikTokers, Gouillon’s AR/VR effects have appeared in countless videos; in fact, videos using her creations have now racked up nearly billions of views. That success has made Gouillon one of TikTok’s top AR designers.
The importance of augmented reality for marketing can’t be stressed enough. The potential of AR is enormous to the point that it can help you unravel completely new business opportunities.
AR cannot only solve an array of customer pain points but can also provide an enhanced pre-purchase and post-purchase experience.
As a leading Digital Marketing Agency, eDigital suggests integrating AR into your marketing app solutions and ensuring you put great effort into choosing and briefing your AR developer or agency.
If you need support writing your AR app brief, ensuring you have covered all the key elements for a successful AR execution, you can contact us.
eDigital can also help you conceptualise, plan, develop, run and optimise successful marketing campaigns that generate leads and sales for your brand.
The services we offer include:
- Strategic planning for social media and other digital marketing channels.
- Online advertising management and optimisation (Search, Display, social media ads and re-marketing).
- Marketing training: social media training and digital marketing training.
- SEO strategy and execution. Including content development (articles, stories, eye-catching and SEO-optimised visuals).
- Celebrity and influencer marketing campaign strategy.
- Brand development. Logo creation, brand personality development and design of marketing materials.
- Consumer contests/competitions/giveaways.
- Email marketing. Dip sequence design and deployment.
- Conversion rate optimisation. Also called “path to purchase” optimisation.
Next > Access this exclusive and premium AR App Brief template now!
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HOW TO WRITE THE BEST AUGMENTED REALITY APP DEVELOPMENT BRIEF IN 2024
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