Experience the Winter Olympics in Augmented Reality
The New York Times unveils new AR experience for the PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Winter Games.
The New York Times just debuted its first augmented reality experience: a preview piece for the Winter Olympics, enabling readers to meet world-class Olympic athletes–including figure skater Nathan Chen, big air snowboarder Anna Gasser and short track speed skater J.R. Celski–as if they were paused in mid-performance.
According to the NYT, using a smartphone camera, AR storytelling gives users the chance to explore information in new ways, with less swiping and clicking and more movement and gestures, and invites readers to engage with journalism like never before.
“There’s no question that these are early days for AR, but our work so far suggests that this emerging technology has real potential to help our readers experience the news differently, helping them understand the world more deeply,” says Steve Duenes, assistant masthead editor at The New York Times.
“The Times has been among the most innovative digital storytellers for many years. On desktop, mobile, in our exploration of data visualization and other forms of visual journalism, including virtual reality, we’ve been committed to creating the most compelling and vibrant report possible, and this experiment in AR is a part of that,” adds Duenes. “We cover today’s most compelling news events from around the world, and now our readers can get closer to these stories and subjects, from a possible border wall to a figure skater’s quadruple jump. They can take in the size, shape and details of the objects at the center of our coverage.”
Ralph Lauren, an Official Outfitter of the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Teams, also gives readers the chance to see Team USA ice dancers Maia and Alex Shibutani in AR as they model the official Ralph Lauren Team USA Opening Ceremony Parade uniforms. T Brand Studio collaborated with Ralph Lauren on the creative design and concept to enhance user-experience. The Ralph Lauren AR interactive, which was produced by New York Times Company experiential design agency Fake Love, is the first AR experience from an advertiser to live inside The New York Times app for iOS.
“In continuing to explore and support innovation across all aspects of our business, we partnered with The New York Times to launch the cutting-edge Olympics AR experience, we’re excited to build innovative ideas that bring the Olympics to life for the consumer in new and exciting ways,” said David Lauren, the company’s chief innovation officer.
The New York Times developed the AR experience leveraging Apple’s ARKit, which is now available to hundreds of millions of iPhones and iPads users with devices running iOS 11. They also say the experience will be coming to Android soon, built with ARCore. A comprehensive guide to AR at The Times is also available here.
For companies looking to leverage Augmented Reality and other immersive technologies, Tech Trends offers a comprehensive range of Virtual Reality Consultancy services
Alice Bonasio is a VR Consultant and Tech Trends’ Editor in Chief. She also regularly writes for Fast Company, Ars Technica, Quartz, Wired and others. Connect with her on LinkedIn and follow @alicebonasio on Twitter.
Originally published at Tech Trends.