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Ask HN: Any cool ARKit or ARCore apps out there right now gaining popularity?
88 points by forkLding 11 months ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 42 comments
Its been quite a while since ARKit and/or ARCore came out, was wondering if there were any apps built on this technology that became popular.

I created an app that uses ARKit + Machine Learning (CoreML) called InstaSaber that projects a virtual lightsaber out of a piece of rolled up paper: http://instasaber.com/

It was more a proof-of-concept of the technology I'm working on, but I think it's worth checking out (it's free to download). I think you will start to see a lot more cool implementations of ARKit/ARCore that integrate with CNN's and do new and unique things.

Edit: 20k downloads in first week, I haven't bothered to market it though.

That's dope! Feature idea - multiple "lightsabres" in the same frame with collision detection with sparks/sound FX. I can give you the gfx/sound assets if you need :)

Used to make little films with my kids using After Effects - here's one - https://youtu.be/IRyy2BhbuaU

They love it but it's quite slow and painstaking. Instant AR version would be amazing.

Many people have requested dueling, but there's a few technical hurdles there : ) Nice work with your kid!

So sick. Any insight on the ML models/training?

Hi, I have seen your app before, when you released it. (from reddit I guess)

Are you planning to release it for android? or any similar apps for android ?

I would love it if I had the time and resources to do that, but hard to justify with how poor the retention was on iOS (understandably, from a gimmick like this). Quite a good chance I will be targeting Android first next app I do.

Not related with the original question, but your landing is great. No text and in just 2 seconds I understood what your app does.

It's such a dumb idea it doesn't need much explaining, haha

how ARKit is used in this case? Isn't ARKit for detecting plane objects?

Essentially, just using it to feed frames into the CoreML model, but not using the planar detection. However, I am using ARKit world orientation tracking in other stuff I'm working on like this: https://twitter.com/2020cv_inc/status/969628227130949633

oh, for rendering I guess

yes, that as well

My app was featured on the App Store as "Game of the Day" and "Great on iPhone X" and has gotten pretty popular: https://itunes.apple.com/app/id1312458558

It's called Rainbrow and it uses the iPhone X's face-tracking capabilities to allow you to play the game with your eyebrows. Not exactly an ARKit app in the traditional sense, but it makes use of ARKit API's. It's also free!

What kind of retention are you seeing? Are users downloading it because it's a cool thing to try out, or are they coming back to it?

It's my goto when people want to play games on my phone.

I think the sentiment implicit in your question—that the initial hype wave of AR has cooled off—is valid. I believe one of the biggest reasons we’ve yet to see AR truly succeed on mobile is that it’s prohibitively difficult it is to create AR content right now. You need professional developers and real budgets to create a single AR experience. It’s too costly for businesses/brands/individuals to experiment or try new things, which is why there are only something like 2,000 ARKit apps on the Apple App Store [0]. Given that, it’s not surprising that we haven’t seen any big, behavior-changing hits aside from Pokemon Go and messenger frames.

You might be interested in what we've been working on at Metaverse [1]. The platform we're building allows non-programmers to create interactive content that leverages AR (our beta testers have already created over 30K experiences).

We’ve been at it for about a year and a half now and are still in beta, but it's being used by marketers, teachers, record labels, etc. [2] These people don’t know how to code (most of them don’t even know what ARKit is). They’re ordinary people [3] who now have access to a powerful tool that lets them try new things, play with new patterns, and leverage otherwise-inaccessible technologies to solve their own problems.

The long tail of Youtube brought us unboxing videos, Twitch, and Justin Bieber; we want to see what AR (and software, generally) begins to look like when ordinary people have the power to create. I think that's where the really cool stuff is going to be. Check out our Twitter account to see some of the awesome things people are making: https://twitter.com/metaverseapp


[0] https://sixcolors.com/post/2018/02/this-is-tim-transcript-of...

[1] https://gometa.io/

[2] https://medium.com/metaverseapp

[3] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f-VTbkDX694

FYI https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2t1g5_eGkJI at the end points to gometa.io/gifts which is dead

Thanks for the heads up :) We leaned into a lot of location-based stuff in the early days (around the time of the Pokemon Go craze)--check these out: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qd6DjJ0GdBQ and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FCrWYFTDqfU

For me the AR furniture / product placements apps are one of the better use cases ( ikea, amazon. ) They're really the best way to see what that new couch will look like in your house. Also the floor plan creation apps have seen a fair amount of downloads ( PLNR, etc ) Then there's the fart app of AR: the tape measure apps. ( AirMeasure, etc )

Houzz also has a decent amount of furniture available for an AR preview.

I am extremely bullish on ar headsets -- I'm convinced it will flip several markets on their heads.

Adding AR to phones doesn't seem particularly interesting to me, though. Some technology is just a fad -- remember when people cared about ringtones? That's pretty much how I feel about snapchat filters, which seems to be the best use case people have found for anything close to AR. Pokemon go doesn't count (it's a GPS game).

I think ARKit is mostly a long play from apple to get people used to their API and prepared for when headsets come out.

Once it becomes social things may change.

Check out our app Plane Finder 3D https://planefinder.net/3D/

When I saw what you were doing I thought "oh so you point your phone at the sky and it shows commercial planes around you as dots over the horizon" (or something). Then I saw the living room visualization and I realized that's not what you meant by AR. That could be a nice feature though (just a suggestion).

I would if you had an Android version.

Is there ARKit for android? I thought that was a set of Apple APIs.

Or are you just trolling?

ARCore is Google's equivalent.

It’s called ARCore

Dance Dance AR. I wont call it popular but we do see in-app purchases for full content unlocks.

https://everyplay.com/videos/50667268 https://everyplay.com/videos/50459819


We've launched an AR app working with museums that seems to be doing fairly well with audiences at this stage: https://www.bbc.co.uk/taster/pilots/civilisations-ar. As a not for profit it's hard to say how that would translate into financial success, but it's doing okay with audience numbers

I tried Civilizations AR a couple of days ago. Great app.

These are pretty cool:


I’ve seen them show up a bunch online and on Snapchat.

As someone who spent a lot of time in the early AR space, it's disappointing to see that, a decade later, marketing teams haven't come up with anything better to sell the tech than dancing characters placed on tables.

But, hey, you don't need a black and white marker to do it anymore, so I guess that's progress.

I don't think AR is really going to take off until we have something closer to true AR glasses. The real power of AR is in contextual computing, that the system surfaces information as you need it / as you change your view.

Contextual: you look at a flower with your AR glasses and it tells you the species.

No Context: you look at a flower and a dancing hotdog appears on it.

My cofounder and I are making Arrow (YC W18), an ARKit app where users can add animated texts & emojis to the real-world, and share videos of it. Most popular feature is Automoji = emojis automatically appear as the camera detects real-world objects. Using ARKit + CoreML + Vision http://arrowapp.io/

I think Artivive has some kind of traction at the moment, at least among the hipster artist demographic:


Kind of fun to see people having productive reasons to point their phones at paintings, though I'm sure it's giving some gallery operators conniptions ..

The app which is really little more than a demo, but has had the most use in my house has been the lego ar studio


I’ve been working on a sports data AR camera app. Coming to Android soon. Am just now starting to promote it. https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/rmxsports/id1329303993?mt=8

JigSpace - it is early stages, but a cool idea.

Somewhat related, has anyone seen anything being done with Watch 3?

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