Spatial Intros Augmented Reality Platform for Mobile Devices

With the COVID-19 pandemic, use of Zoom and other platforms enabling remote collaboration has skyrocketed. Now, Spatial Systems, a holographic platform for augmented reality and virtual reality, debuted an AR app for iOS and Android that can run on nearly any current generation mobile device. Pricey AR and VR headsets have remained out of reach for many, but there are billions of smartphones enabled for augmented reality on the market. Spatial relied on ARKit and ARCore for iOS and Android to achieve its AR and VR capabilities.

SiliconANGLE reports that Spatial co-founder and chief executive Anand Agarawala noted that, “this is a huge step for spatial computing and for us in solidifying our leadership as the leading AR/VR collaboration tool on the market today.”

“Previously only people with a headset could experience the true magic of Spatial but we wanted anyone to be able to take advantage of it,” he added. “Now, you simply hold up your phone and for the first time ever can become an active part of any virtual meeting and see lifelike avatars of coworkers or friends right in your living room.”

Statista reported that, in 2024, “the AR/VR market size is projected to gross revenue of $73 billion … up from $12 billion in 2020, driven primarily by enterprise use for team collaboration and entertainment use in the consumer sector.” Spatial, which raised $14 million this year for a total of $22.3 million in funding, “launched on the Oculus Quest store and introduced an auditorium environment, a VR space that can seat more than 40 people at once for collaboration as if they were in a lecture hall.”

“Our mobile and web apps offer the perfect gateway experience for those that want to try out the benefits of connecting more deeply with remote friends, family or colleagues but without the upfront financial commitment of a headset,” said Spatial co-founder andchief product officer Jinha Lee. “The Quest 2 is projected to sell up to 6 million devices in its first year but we can bring Spatial to billions of users on mobile.”

Lee predicted that, “the phone is where AR will thrive first and we’re capitalizing on this trend today.”

ZDNet reports that IEEE senior member David Witkowski predicts that, “in 2021, AR/VR will continue to remain important as society continues to focus on generating economic growth while avoiding health risks.” He added that the “projected growth is more than a COVID bandaid … [but rather] there’s every reason to believe 3D content will become ubiquitous in the year ahead.”

At Seek, a company specializing in platform agnostic AR solutions, co-founder and chief executive Jon Cheney noted that, “as more platforms enable interactive use cases for 3D/AR models it will become an invaluable marketing channel that cannot be ignored.”

“Longer term, as popularity grows, we can expect the standard file format for 3D models to become universally supported, just like PNG or JPEG are for 2D images,” he added. “This will lower barriers to entry and democratize the technology even further.” In 2021, said Cheney, we should see AR use cases that “create digital content that augments, rather than distracts us from our reality.”