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    Vuforia vs ARKit vs Arcore: Choosing an Augmented Reality SDK

    Vuforia vs ARKit vs Arcore: Choosing an Augmented Reality SDK

    Ilya Dudkin


    7 min read

    vuforia vs arkit vs arcore

    With all the developments in AR lately, it could be difficult to choose an SDK engine. Fortunately, there has been a lot of investments promoting AR developments from some of the biggest names in the industry which could make developing for AR apps both fun and profitable. An AR SDK is an engine that powers the app. This is what enables all of the cool features that allow your device to be aware of its surroundings, log this information and transfer it all to the digital world. Today we created an augmented reality SDK comparison to help you choose the right engine for creating your apps. Keep in mind that while the most important features of each platform are provided, a lot will depend on individual circumstances such as experience, funding etc.  

    AR VR banner

    ARKit vs ARCore

    They are the two biggest AR SDK engines and let’s take a look at the ARKit first:

    • Outstanding Tracking – unrivaled tracking with stat collected from motion sensors to locate the position of a device in the real world.
    • Plane Detection – It is able to identify pretty much any object within its surroundings
    • Rendering – It can be integrated without any problems at all with various technologies that support both Unity and Unreal Engine.

    Google, also a competitor for the best AR platform title, countered with the ARCore:

    • Catching Movements – This is one of the most innovative features. It uses all the data that is obtained from the sensors to determine the device positioning.
    • Light Detection – It senses the overall characteristics of the light and makes the picture sharper by accounting for missing or extra light. For example, if you are in a dim room, it will automatically adjust the picture with extra light.
    • User Engagement – The ARCore detects intersecting rays of light through the device’s camera
    • Anchoring Objects – For an object to appear virtual object in its proper place, the ARCore sets an anchor, which gives it the ability to monitor an object’s displacement.

    AR SDK

    Each platform will only work on its respective operating system, however, Google has an advantage in terms of notoriety since it has previously experimented with AR. All the lessons learned have been incorporated into the next generation of AR technology. Additionally, Google wants to introduce AR to the web by creating a browser which enables developers to create AR webpages. In terms of software, they are pretty much the same since they work with Unity and Unreal engine which lets them collect information about their surrounding and transfer it to the AR world.

    Vuforia vs ARKit

    Since we already studied the ARKit in great detail, let’s take a look at Vuforia. The main features of Vuforia are:

    •  It supports both Android and iOS
    • Every smartphone that has a rear-view camera can support Vuforia
    • It is marker based. You will need a marker to view an object in augmented reality, therefore requiring less computation

    If we look at the big picture, in the future AR will be without markers, meaning that Apple has an advantage in this regard. However, Vuforia has been catching up lately with the launch of Vuforia Fusion that integrates the features of the ARKit and ARCore in Vuforia 7. This will be good news for augmented reality software development who are looking to build an app for many platforms.

    augmented reality sdk

    Vuforia vs ARCore

    In most metrics, Vuforia cannot even touch the ARCore. However, the only advantage it could have in terms of usability since it can be integrated with all sorts of operating systems. ARCore is much more advanced in terms of understanding its surrounding and the various surface environments. You can put pretty much any 3D object on a physical surface regardless of complexity. All the things we mentioned earlier about motion tracking, lights detection, objects anchoring and so on, are light years ahead of Vuforia.

    We hope that this augmented reality platforms comparison gave you a better understanding of which AR SDK would best suit your needs. Each of these engines has their own pluses and minuses along with its distinct features and they can all be used to create commercial AR apps. The ultimate choice regarding the production environment will depend on proffered marker recognition and the development team’s experience using each technology. When creating an AR app you have to account for the future to plan out its overall success. You must be able to provide users with an AR app that will work in all sorts of lighting and surface environments and, in order to provide such an experience, you need the most powerful SDK engine out there. Both Google and Apple will continue investing heavily into AR but considering that Google has been in the game longer and has lived through all of the bumps and bruises of Project Tango, it is safer to say that they are ahead of the game in terms of innovative AR technologies.

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