Example Applications



NCSA ACCESS Magazine Cover

The Fall 2012 issue of NCSA ACCESS Magazine used a magic lens paradigm of augmented reality to enhance each of the major stories (and cover) of the physical magazine.

For a much more thorough coverage, see chapter 8 of Understanding Augmented Reality, and the chapter enhancement on this website.

If you just want to try it, get a copy of the PDF of the magazine at:

Also, get a copy of the daqri app on iTunes, or the Android store.  Them you can start the daqri app and enjoy the augmentations in NCSA’s ACCESS Magazine.


Older Examples of Mobile Augmented Reality Applications

The following list of applications were compiled by Margarita Mouschovias June, 2011:




Fairy Trails

Fairy Trails

Fairies, butterflies, and fireflies are superimposed over the phone’s camera.  Tapping the fairies captures them in a jar and shaking the phone makes more appear on the screen.



Probably the most similar of all the apps to the AR Eager project, Kweekies are virtual pets that live in another dimension.  With the use of a smart phone and a “portal” (paper with a specific symbol on it) the player can view their Kweeke.  The pets can play games and move some objects shown on the screen (like a coffee mug).


Virtual Graffiti

Virtual Graffiti

Virtual Graffiti

Virtual Graffiti lets the user draw on their surroundings virtually.  The drawings can be saved and others with the app can view them.

Fire Fighter 360

In this game, you are a firefighter who must put out the flames around you.  It is only available for the iPhone 3GS.



iPew lets the player shoot virtual weapons at his surroundings.



This game lets the user shoot various virtual weapons at their surroundings.


Sky Siege

The goal of this game is to shoot down incoming aircraft.




Dish Pointer

Shows the position and orientation of satellites.  It was originally intended to help people install satellite dishes.



SunSeeker shows the path of the sun (today, shortest day of the year, longest day of the year).  It also shows the current location of the sun and its shadow point.



This app “serves as a compass, GPS, map, zoom camera, rangefinder, and two-axis inclinometer.”  All of this information is overlaid on the video feed from the camera.  This app is only for iPhone.



Spyglass is a “useful augmented reality navigation tool that includes a milspec compass, tracker and finder for GPS locations, constant bearings, Sun, Moon and stars, inclinometer, sextant, rangefinder, angular calculator, camera (with 5x zoom), maps and lot of other useful features.”


AR Compass

AR Compass superimposes a compass with the correct heading over the video feed from the user’s camera.



Outlines the skyline visible through your phone’s camera.  Peaks are labeled.


Peaks, SwissPeaks and WorldPeaks show the user the names of mountains visible through their smart phone’s camera.


Pocket Universe

Point the phone towards the sky and the app will superimpose the location of stars and planets.


Traveller AR

An MMORPG, currently in closed beta testing, set to be released on the App Store in summer 2011.




Layar is a browser used on Android-based phones.  Users can put “tags” on locations.  When the phone gets close to the tag it will either make a sound or display an object on the screen (both specified in advance by the user).  Objects can appear in either 2 or 3D.  Layar also allows the user to set 3D objects as icons.

Yelp Monocle

Yelp uses the phone’s GPS to place icons for establishments over their image on the phone’s video.



This app is like Yelp for Singapore.  It shows the location and ratings for local restaurants.


Le Bar Guide

Directs users to the nearest bar.  Also aids them in finding a cab.



Directs you to comfortable workspaces.  Even gives you ratings for the coffee.


Acrossair Nearest Subway

Shows the direction and distance the phone is from the closest subway the phone is pointing towards.  This app is only available for iPhone 3GS.


London Tube

This app shows the location and distance Londoners are from the nearest tube.  Obviously, it only works in London.  It is also possible to add points of interest.


Car Finder

Car Finder uses your car’s Bluetooth to record the GPS coordinates of where your car was last turned of at.  It will then give you directions back to your car based on your car’s location.


Cheap Gas

Cheap Gas shows you the location of the nearest gas stations and their current prices.


Bionic Eye

“Bionic Eye is an application specifically developed for the iPhone 3GS that enables you to visualize Points of Interest (POI) located in your nearby environment.”

Robot Vision

Robot Vision shows you the location of various attractions near you.  It also shows the location of Twitter “tweets” and photos on Flickr.



Cyclopedia shows the location of nearby landmarks over the camera’s video feed.


Sekai Camera

This app allows users to attach writing and pictures to specific locations.  Anyone else with the app can see what others have left.  This app is only available in Japan, but will soon be available to everyone.



Tagwhat is trying to make AR more interactive by letting users tag locations, and comment on other people’s tags.,2817,2363481,00.asp



WhereMark overlays the name of restaurants, subways, and other points of interest over video feed from the real world.  It is different from similar apps (like layar) in that users can add their own points of interest to be viewed later.


Lonely Planet

Popular book publisher Lonely Planet has released apps for several US cities.  These apps overlay information from their books over the actual locations on video feed from an iPhone.


Heads Up Navigator

This app overlays information about the real world onto the video feed from the phone’s camera.  The goal of this app is to aid in navigation.


Aure Custom Augmented Reality

Gives the user information about the world around them.


Nearby Navigator

This app acts as a GPS and will give you directions to wherever you want to go.  It will show you similar locations.


Nearest Wiki

Nearest Wiki gives you a synopsis of POI’s near you.

Zagat to Go

This app finds local restaurants.  The Android version is unique because you can either download it through the app market or scan a marker they have posted on their web page.


Around Me

Around Me directs the user to the nearest POI’s.


Nearest Places

With variations like New York Nearest Places, these apps show the location of nearby businesses.


Yell Labs

Produced by Yell (formerly Yellow Pages), this app is designed to help you find local businesses.

Metro Paris Subway

This app displays the location of the Paris Subway along with other POI’s.


Washington Metro

The AR part of this app shows nearby POIs.


London Bus

This app shows POIs in London.



“Shake your iPhone and the Urbanspoon slot machine will pick a good restaurant for you to try.”



This app shows where Twitter “tweets” were posted nearby.


Twitter 360

This app points out the user’s Twitter friends in the area.


World Surfer

This app displays information about whatever business it is looking at.

A Café View

This app directs you to the nearest café.

iNeed Coffee

Unfortunately, the only web page I could find on this is not in English, so I don’t know what it does.


Pizza Hut

This app shows you the location of the nearest Pizza Hut.

Spot Crime

This app displays a figure of a person committing a crime where a similar crime recently took place.


Traffic View

This app shows the traffic far ahead of you depending on which direction you point the phone.



“The application allows users to view information on existing buildings and browse 3D models of buildings in development.”



(No pictures, only videos)

“FoodTracer is a mobile phone application that visualizes information about the origin, production and distribution of food, including the amount of natural resources consumed in the process.”


Snap n Tap

“Draw a course with pen and paper, photograph it with your iPhone, then drop a marble on the screen and watch as the state-art-of-the-art physics engine makes it roll, jump and bounce around your course.”



This app acts as a compass and shows you the direction and distance from any chosen point on the globe.


Arcade Reality

Aliens are invading the earth and only you can see them.  Use the phone to shoot them out of the sky.

Dimension Invaders

Destroy alien invaders that only you can see through your iPhone’s video feed.



Run away from the people chasing you in this AR game.  GPS tracks where you are in real time.



This app shows the position of other players nearby.  Virtually shoot them before they shoot you.


Wanted Dead or Alive

Wanted Dead or Alive is an AR first-person shooter game.


Zombie ShootAR

This first-person shooter game superimposes zombies over the video feed from a camera for the user to “shoot.”



The AR version of paintball or laser tag, use the phone as a gun to tag out other players.


Parallel Kingdom: Age of Emergence

“Parallel Kingdom is a mobile based massively multiplayer game that uses your GPS location to place you in a virtual world on top of the real world.”


The Hidden Park

“The application uses all the features of the iPhone to lead children into a fantasy world of trolls, fairies and tree genies – right in their local park!”


Xmas Camera2

This app shows a small Santa over a marker that the user must first print out.



This app places a pair of sunglasses over the video feed from an iPhone.



TagDis lets you virtually draw on your surroundings.



This app creates a virtual mini golf course wherever you are.


Hidden Sky

Hidden Sky point to the position of all the planets and many man made objects.


Compass Camera

“Compass Camera is an augmented reality application for your iPhone 3GS that provides an active compass over the top of a video display of whatever you’re pointing your iPhone at.”


Compass AR

Compass AR displays a compass across the top of the video feed from a smart phone.



Displays a compass over the video feed from a smart phone.


Museum of London: Street Museum

Street Museum overlays the phone’s camera feed with historic pictures of the area.



Destroy the alien organisms in this first-person shooter.



Print out the AR marker and drive an AR car around your desk.


Ghost Bastards AR

Destroy the ghosts in this first-person shooter game.



Described as a social networking game, WorldLenns allows the user to tag areas around him/her with pictures for all to see.



Toozla gives audio tours and directs you to local landmarks in your city.



Partnered with Layar Augmented Reality Browser, BrightKite is a social networking app that allows you to view the location where your friends wrote a post.


This app allows you to play tag with four AR ghosts.


Get London Reading

This app displays books over places where the books are set in real life.


Star Walk – 5 stars astronomy guide

Point the phone at the sky and see what’s up there.

Tiger Beer

Tiger Beer acts as a compass to direct you to the nearest celebrations this Chinese New Year.


ristoranti d’Italia del Gambero Rosso 2010

Unfortunately, I can’t find and sites that aren’t in Italian so I’m not exactly sure what this app does.  It looks like it directs the user to local restaurants.



Huckleberry is an AR digital compass.


Beijing Discovery AR

This app combines a compass and digital database of attractions to help the user navigate Beijing.


Reality Compass

Reality Compass overlays the cardinal directions over the video feed from a camera.


iFindit AR

This app allows you to tag your favorite locations to find them more easily later.


AR Monster

AR Monsters appear in the camera feed.  Tap the screen to battle them.


BMW Pathfinder “microNavigation”

In the course of its quest for AP GPS navigation, BMW has announced a Pathfinder “microNavigation” app.  This app is able to guide drivers through small areas whose maps are not usually accessible through GPS (like parking lots).





Helps you measure short distances by overlaying a ruler over the video on the phone.  Tilting the phone will adjust the measurements accordingly.



Twitter “tweets” show up on the screen in relation to where they were posted.  The app is only available for the iPhone 3GS because it uses the accelerometer to tell which way it is facing.


TAT Augmented ID

TAT uses facial recognition to figure out who the camera is looking at.  It then displays information (phone number, Facebook, etc.) around that person on the phone’s screen.  The app only recognizes people who have signed up for the service.



Arf displays a 3D image of a dog over a marker.



iKat shows a virtual cat walking across whatever the camera sees.  It is unique because it does not require a marker to tell the phone where to put the cat.



Essentially the same as TAT Augmented ID except that you don’t get to choose what is displayed around your head.


Wikitude Drive

Wikitude Drive started beta testing May 10, 2010.  It will overlay directions over the video feed from a camera to direct a driver where to go.


Wikitude World Browser

This app overlays information about the phone’s surroundings over the video feed from the camera.



Destroy a virtual city be becoming a gigantic rubber duck in this AR game.  Quacking destroys things.

Topps Baseball Cards

Hold the card up to a webcam and a virtual image of the player appears.


Mastercard: AR outdoor campaign

Mastercard bought outdoor ads in Singapore that Mastercard holders can interact with using their credit cards.


Home Depot gift card

Shoppers can now buy an augmented reality gift card from Home Depot.  Hold the card up in front of a webcam on their site and a box will appear.  Shake the card and it opens.


Lego Kiosks

Lego has developed kiosks that, when shown a box of legos, will display a model of what the kit will build.


Parrot AR Drone

-The AR Drone is a quad copter.  It can be controlled by either an iPhone or an iPod Touch.  The controller takes video from the Drone and displays it on its screen.  Drones can virtually battle each other or markers that are displayed as robots on the screen.

-I highly recommend watching the video on the website.  It’s sort of a hard concept to explain.

-AR Drone was developed by the same people who developed Kweekies: int13.  It is scheduled to come out sometime in the summer of 2010.


Golfscape GPS Rangefinder

“Golfers can pin point positions on a golf course allowing them to locate hazards and choose desired landing areas all in real time with GPS data and 360 degree viewing.”


AR Soccer and AR Basketball

Both available on the iTunes Store – kick or bounce a soccer/basketball around in front of you.


SnapShop Showroom

See what a new piece of furniture will look like in your home without buying it.


See Breeze 3D

See wind and weather conditions in your area, including wind direction.



Turns your camera into a sketcher.


Word Lens

Translates words on your phone.



This app holds AR tours of colleges.

Unfortunately, this app has apparently not been accepted by Apple’s App Store yet.