In the discipline “Mobile Apps” in the category “Idea/Innovation”, XRGO as a CAMAO TEC brand received the German Digital Award 2021 in bronze. The Augmented Reality App for indoor and outdoor navigation, which was developed together with the research and innovation centre KODIS of the Fraunhofer IAO, was evaluated. The special feature of this AR navigation is that it does not use established technologies such as GPS or Bluetooth.
Enabling navigation indoors as well
Simple, satellite-based navigation systems have been part of our everyday lives for years. However, these systems only navigate as far as the front door. But especially in complex buildings or large areas, users need support in navigating indoors to find the place they are looking for.At the very beginning of the project on the Bildungscampus Heilbronn, there was the simple idea of being able to navigate not only outdoors but also indoors. However, this is not technologically feasible with GPS. So at the Bildungscampus Heilbronn together with the Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Engineering IAO and with XRGO, a brand of CAMAO TEC, a new technical solution has been developed to enable navigation in both indoor and outdoor spaces.The result is an AR-based app for indoor and outdoor navigation – without GPS, beacons, markers or magnetic sensors. The only requirement for functionality is an active internet connection and a mobile device. This allows people to be navigated not only to a specific location, but also seamlessly inside the building.
The AR Navigation app is intuitive to use
Using the AR app is very simple: After selecting the destination, the user points the smartphone camera at their surroundings and the route is virtually superimposed on the camera image they are currently seeing on their display. It does not matter whether the user is inside a building or outside – transitions between outside and inside areas are also possible seamlessly.In the functional and UX tests conducted by Fraunhofer IAO, indoor and outdoor navigation was already possible on large parts of the test site. The transitions between different areas also worked without any problems. The test persons showed great interest in the new form of navigation and were able to navigate intuitively to various destinations after only a short introductory phase.The localisation was realised by XRGO with Azure Spatial Anchor, AI, ARKit and ARCore, among others. Characteristic for the implementation is also the use of low-polly 3D models and the type of navigation with the help of Unity3D.
Many uses for AR navigation
From campus to cruise ships
This innovative AR-based navigation has great potential and can make our lives much easier. Further fields of application are already being planned:
On complex company premises, fitters or maintenance personnel can find their way around immediately and are guided to their place of work.
At events and trade fairs, visitors can easily find their seat, the stand, the toilet or the snack bar. It is also possible to plan the desired route in advance of the visit.
In the supermarket, customers can find items and offers much more easily, and it is even conceivable to plan an efficient indoor route for their shopping list.
Large hotel or cruise ship guests will find their way to their rooms and hotel facilities without any detours.
In large office complexes or public authorities, visitors can be navigated to the right room even across floors.
In the museum, the visitor can be navigated along a predefined or specially compiled route and call up additional AR content on the exhibits.
At large train stations or airports, passengers are navigated to the platform or gate quickly and in a relaxed manner.
In the logistics area, employees, external service providers and truck drivers can be guided directly to the storage locations.
In the event of an emergency, rescue personnel or emergency teams can get an idea of the situation before they arrive thanks to digital plans and can be guided to the scene of the incident.
Video of the pioneering work on AR navigation together with the project partner KODIS from Fraunhofer IAO as part of the Heilbronn Smart Campus Initiative (only available in German).
AR Navigation App rated as particularly innovative
For over eight years, the German Digital Award (DDA for short) has been one of the most important awards for digital creative excellence in the DACH region. The submissions are reviewed and evaluated by a top-class jury consisting of trade and creative experts from advertising, companies and the trade press. At DDA 2021, a total of 12 times gold, 31 times silver and 34 times bronze were awarded. Awards were given to the apps that offer a surprisingly relevant, social or emotional added value for the user. The jury assessed the AR navigation app by XRGO as a particularly innovative implementation due to the completely new interaction possibilities and awarded this idea the Bronze Award in the category “Innovation/Idea” from the category “Mobile Apps”.
XRGO takes AR Navigation to the next level
The AR navigation solution is constantly being further developed. Benefit and economic efficiency are in the foreground. Since the solution works without hardware and only via Point Cloud, the operating costs are manageable even for smaller companies. There are no limits to individual development for various purposes in companies and in everyday life.
Does AR Navigation also suit your company?
Our X-Reality professionals will be pleased to advise you and develop an individual solution with you.