Augmented Reality concepts are becoming more mainstream. Not too long ago Mini released a magazine ad in Germany utilizing the interactive technique. Now Topps has jumped on the bandwagon with their 3D Live baseball cards. What a great application! Check out the video below for a demo of the cards in use.
I first saw this mentioned in a tweet by @jefftippett who linked to this New York Times article. There’s also more information at Engadget.
Nintendo has teamed up with the Seattle Mariners for a pilot program in their stadium. People can bring their DS to a game, and for $5 ($30 for 10 games) load it with software that ties the device into the stadium’s WiFi network. Then, the users can order food, play trivia games, and watch video replays of the action on the field.
This is such a cool concept, and looks to be a great execution. I could see this being used at a NASCAR race to show everyone the position of their favorite drivers on the track. Or how about at a Basketball game to show the number of points each player has scored so far, or who’s about the foul out.
The DS has been one of the best selling devices in history… is the install base large enough for something like this to catch on? The hardware is not particularly expensive at $130, and if enough places utilize it this way the cost may be justified. Can enough parents just borrow the kids’ DSs?
It’d be nice if this type of solution could be rolled out for an open set of hardware… a sort of intranet website with this functionality, but without the ability to control the target hardware things like interface and streaming media become very difficult to pull off well.
So what do you think? Is the DS the perfect platform for event-augmentation? What other applications do you think would have a chance to becoming popular? Will a day come that our cellphones are standardized enough to log onto a local network for this sort of thing?