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Blippar developing 'WordPress of AR' to feed Apple's ARKit, Google's ARCore

Early entry into augmented reality solutions company Blippar has two new products, with one being a universal kit to develop ARKit and ARCore applications and provide them data.

As a practical application of the technology, Blippa has a Landmark Recognition SDK in development. Without using any form of location data, the software will identify famous landmarks by sight either in the real world, or by examining a picture.

Blippar claims that the feature will spot more than 2000 landmarks around the world, and some sports facilities as well. The company says that the technology will work both within the Blippar app in the near future, as well as be a service that can be used by other applications.

The Landmark Recognition feature doesn't use Apple's ARKit or Google's ARCore, making it platform agnostic.

"In order for augmented reality to scale, computers need to recognize reality," Blippar's CEO Ambarish Mitra told The Verge in an interview. "Everyone is focused on placing things on top of things [with AR]. But computers need to really, semantically, understand reality."

The landmark recognition feature is all part of a larger product, called Blippbuilder. The AR app development suite has two parts —the Blippbuilder itself, and Blippbuilder Script —a JavaScript interface that allows users to "create complex rich media experiences" according to the company.

The Blippbuilder suite's promotional materials harken back to Blipp's original failed venture in 2011 —augmented reality experiences associated with advertising or product packaging. But, given that Apple and Google have paved the way for augmented reality in smartphones, the addition of the JavaScript scripting has the potential to grow that, into more interactive uses of augmented reality.

Mitra claimed in an interview in 2017 that developers of the technology using Blippbuilder "don't have to have any technology knowledge" to use the product, with the results able to be published with ARCore or ARKit if desired.