Clicking with history

Clicking with history

Remember the time when the city was hooked to 'Pokemon Go'? You would have then noticed many Bengalureans at Cubbon Park and other locations pointing their phones at random objects to catch  'Pokemon'. Well, that fad has moved on and now it's all about having a different view of the city and its landmarks.

With companies like Google, Facebook, Microsoft and Samsung  making most of their products using the virtual reality market, it only seems apt for startups to use their own versions of virtual reality and make an impact. Augmented Reality (AR) is one such concept that has been picking up well in Cubbon Park and Lalbagh. Soon, MG Road will follow suit.

AR is a live direct or an indirect view of a physical, real-world environment whose  elements are augmented by computer-generated or extracted real-world sensory input such as sound, videos and graphics. A startup called 'FlippAR' is one such AR application that is allowing Bengalureans and tourists to explore the city better.  

Vivek Jain, the founder, explains, "AR is a blend  of the physical and virtual world. We have been granted permission by the Karnataka government to help use  our app and learn more about the city. Right now, we have the trails formed in Cubbon Park and Lalbagh. We are soon opening the trails for MG Road as well."

So how can one use this? "When you go to these locations, you'll notice a yellow patch. You have to stand on it, point your phone at the building or monument. The app will scan it and give you all the details you need to know about that particular point," says Vivek.  

He adds that it's a great way to understand the history of a place.  You can also add your own story to the pinned location. Vivek explains, "A tourist usually needs a good guide to explain what each place is and what it represents. You might even  face a challenge in understanding the language. However, with 'FlippAR', you can make your visits interactive and explore more."

Apart from tourists,  millennials are also the targeted audience. Pavan Kumar Reddy, a software engineer, goes to Cubbon Park every weekend for a walk. However, for the last three months, he's been learning something new about the place, thanks to AR. He shares, "The yellow patch clearly explains how you can use the app. It's a  great way to learn about the history of the place. I can also tag my friends to the place and partake in quizzes and other interactive games available on the app."

With a powerful phone and a little bit of time, one can learn everything they want and more with augmented reality. After all, it's a great way to connect the past with the present.

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