Apple has announced iOS 11.3 with a list many interesting features. I personally was more interested in the enhancements for ARKit.
According to the press release, iOS 11.3 will feature various updates for AR, including ARKit 1.5. This new update for ARKit includes the ability for ARKit to recognize and place virtual objects on vertical surfaces like wall and doors. Furthermore, it can detect and map irregular shaped surfaces.
More features include the option to recognize the position of 2D images and can integrate real-world images into AR experiences. Apple also improved the camera resolution view by 50 percent and added auto-focus support.
I am particularly excited about the vertical surface detection because this can open up a whole new world of creative possibilities for apps and games.
I asked Brad Dwyer, a developer and the creator of Magic Soduko app, to test it out so I can see how it works in practice. He came up with this:
A quick look at the new ARKit v1.5 demo project in iOS 11.3 beta showing vertical plane detection. (Looks like it's not identifying the whole wall as a plane just the picture frame; not sure if that's a bug or a feature.)
— Brad Dwyer (@braddwyer) January 24, 2018
As you can see, ARkit doesn’t detect the entire wall, only the picture frame. It looks a bit weird because it should have scanned and registered the whole wall, not just a part of it. I guess we’ll know soon as Brand or other developers test it out more fully. I also want to thank Brad Dwyer for spending time testing it out.
I will share more information about ARKit 1.5 as it is revealed by developers who try it in practice. I already have some amazing ideas for games that use the vertical surface detection, if it indeed works as I expected it to work. Can’t wait to see what developers are going to make with it.