"Augmented reality" is still just a high-concept kind of idea, but a new company based in New York City is set to introduce a phone that digitizes the world around you like never before.
The Ouidoo mobile handset has a multi-core CPU and a multi-processor chip design that was created specifically for the purpose of rendering real-time data on overlays of real-life visuals.
The science has become known as "augmented reality," taking a live shot of your surroundings and interacting with it on a digital screen. One of the first commercial concepts is in gaming. For example, you can immerse yourself into a game by using a camera. The video displays your living room, but then monsters start to appear as though they're coming from the kitchen.
QderoPateo, the company behind the Ouidoo, wants to take the technology further. Users who walk around with the phone could, for example, tag landmarks and addresses as they're walking by them in real life. Or the live camera image could be populated with icons directing users to the nearest Starbucks, train station, or hotel. This should not be confused with similar services offered by GPS-based applications; the Ouidoo overlays this information directly on a live video feed of the user's environment.
"Current sensor-based, camera view technologies only enable users to experience a 1.0 version of [augmented reality]. With Articulated Naturality on the Ouidoo, we can achieve complete seamless integration, where virtual changes appear in real time for true interaction," said the company's co-founder Matt Gaines.
Production of the device is set to begin by June for the Chinese market. From there, it will be tailored to function with other country's mobile spectrums including the US's GSM and CDMA networks.